Voices from the Field: James H. Naylor CCSU Leadership Academy

Submitted by Nicole Vitale, Technical Assistance Provider

James H. Naylor CCSU Leadership Academy, a Cohort 3 school in Phase 2 of SPDG implementation, is very committed to family and community engagement. Most of the students of this neighborhood school walk each day with a family member or friends. Every day, administrators and teachers greet their students and families at the door to welcome them to school. This not only provides parents with an opportunity to “check in” with staff, it also provides a positive interaction for students first thing in the morning. In addition, it allows educators to see if any students are coming to school with anything that needs to be addressed before the school day begins.

Last year, as parents and community members gathered to conduct a Welcoming Walkthrough, they noted a number of recommendations to help create a more welcoming and inviting culture and climate in their school. Some of the priority areas included fixing old signage and adding welcoming signs to the building, updating the school website so that parents could readily have access to information, and more positive teacher-parent interactions. Naylor took feedback from the walkthrough very seriously and made some changes to their school almost instantly.

Upon our first visit to the school this year, we saw new welcome signs, clear directions to the main office, and a completely new school website. The site included updated information about school programs as well as PTA updates and resources for families, students, and teachers. In addition, since the Welcoming Walkthrough and initial work with PBIS, teachers are expected to have a positive note sent home to families for at least three students per month.

Naylor is well on its way to creating a welcoming school climate and culture!

Published: January 15, 2015