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Waukegan schools try to get parents more involved


Parents of 60 Waukegan Community Unit School District students will have the opportunity to learn new ways to teach their children reading this spring and how to deal with potential problems at home.

The sessions are planned by the district’s Family and Community Engagement (FACE) team to introduce parents to the science of reading, tension-reduction strategies and more to help them become more engaged in their teens’ learning.

Tasia Fields, the district’s director of equity and inclusion, held a briefing on upcoming FACE Department programs at the Lincoln Center administration building in Waukegan on Tuesday to let the District 60 Board of Education know what is planned.

“This is part of our parent university,” Fields said. “We really want to encourage parents to get out and learn some of the things we do here in the district, especially the science of reading.”

The opening of the first session of the main university this spring is an introduction to the science of reading. After the meeting, Fields said that the meeting will take place in April, but an exact date has not been determined. It is part of the district’s new literacy program.

Parents interested in phonics, reading comprehension, fluency, vocabulary and phonological awareness (understanding the sounds of spoken language) will receive tips to help their children with their studies, he said.

“Parents will learn decoding skills and comprehension skills,” Fields said. “They will understand what their children are reading and doing.”

Learning de-escalation strategies will be part of the main university in May. It will be taught by a licensed clinician to help families deal with behavioral problems that may arise.

“We will talk about building resilience, reorganizing discipline at home, and possible concerns about trauma,” Fields said.

Fields said that after the Board of Education approves Goal 2028, the district’s proposed new strategic plan, this spring, a hearing will be held at the parent university to explain it.

Eduardo Cesario, the district’s assistant superintendent of academic support and programs, said at the meeting that the plan, which took more than a year, is in its final stages and will be ready for board approval soon.

“We went through the process of what we’re going to do, why we’re going to do it, and how we’re going to do it,” Cesario said. “Once all of this is completed, we will uncover what the district’s goals are and what its priorities are.

Cesario, who began working on the strategic plan in late 2022, said after the meeting that the plan is a very high-profile view of the district’s goals based on four pillars: inclusivity, a 21st Century learning environment and equity. and partnerships.

Although dates for the first three parent college sessions have not been set, Fields said Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month celebrations are planned for May 3 at Jack Benny Middle School at 5:30 p.m.

Although there are about three months left in the current school year, Fields said planning is already underway for the annual Back to School Resource Fair to be held July 27 at Waukegan High School’s Brookside Campus.

Fields said FACE Department directors Quinn Norman and Eridania Soler are primarily responsible for planning and organizing events.


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