School Success makes a difference working with child, school staff and family
This story is shared anonymously with the family’s permission.
The first weeks of school during drop off "H" would yell and scream when separated from mom and then shut down after being brought into class. He would not do anything during class and sometimes would resort to hiding or yelling. We had to work on social skills and independence before we could start academics. While he would yell when upset, he was otherwise non verbal at school pointing or shaking his head to answer. He was unable to dress and undress himself, wouldn’t toilet while at school, barely ate and wouldn’t participate in class activities.He was also slower at doing things so often things were done for him by other family members at home. The family agreed to School Success interventions. Working with parents, and school staff we identified barriers.
Working closely with "H", the classroom teacher, instructional assistant and family to do things such as allow him to have a chart for dressing and undressing at home and school, practice putting on a hat and gloves. Having a special spot for his boots with a Batman Logo to find them. Being allowed time to decompress before joining his classmates. Having a sibling walk with him to the bus once he started riding in the afternoon. Were some of the many strategies we tried to help him with independence inching him towards success at school. As he met certain goals we added more. We worked hard and sometimes he would shut down but most times he started making small progress.
At one point, he started saying words responding to our conversations on the way to class. When I would walk him to class each morning, I talked to him and he would smile and listen. Then in class, he started joining in more and eventually started doing more by himself. He now joins the class in most activities and while he still needs academic assistance he is much more independent.
Instead of being dropped off and picked up each day, he proudly walks to the bus with his classmates. At the beginning of the day he walks off the bus into school and always says hello to me before he heads to class now on his own.The family says at home he is singing the songs he learns at school and loves attending school. While the family is still cautious with his illness, they are working towards allowing him to be more independent and they are noticing his growth.
The School Success Liaison working together with the family and school staff progressed this student's growth in a positive way. The family has stated "H" now looks forward to coming to school every morning.
Parenthood is hard enough, imagine living in a homeless shelter, not knowing where your newborn baby will sleep. Fortunately, NEMCSA was able to secure the family a four bedroom rental to come home to after the birth of the family’s newest addition – Julian. With a safe and clean home, both Mom and Julian are thriving and look forward to their future as a family.
Food Assistance Story
Tarin, Housing Specialist, started working with a single mother of three. With a custody battle lingering, food assistance was out of reach. Tarin was able to immediately connect with our Client Services Food Coordinator, Tammy Dean, and take food to the rental unit of the family.
Ken has had an extremely rough go for months, but his luck started to change when a team of community members came together to give him the help that he needed! He was successfully housed and with the help of our agency and other community/agency partners he is on a full road to self-sufficiency.
She was seen walking the streets, homeless, with aching feet. Summer never expected to become homeless. However, soon after relocacting to a new town she fell on some extreme hard times resulting in a separation from her husband. She and her two kids eventually ended up homeless. After meeting with a NEMCSA caseworker, she was provided with the tools and resources to eventually provide her and her children with housing. She even became employed! Through this tumultuous time, remaining positive and grateful for the assistance provided a great example for her kids. Now, she is still working, and her children are on the honor roll, loving school, and having a blast participating in extracurricular activities.
Foster Grandma Story
Although struggling with many years of depression, On the bulletin board was a letter that was going to change her life... It was a letter from NEMCSA asking for Senior Volunteers and Foster Grandparents at the schools. "I didn’t know how that day was going to change my life even more dramatically for the better. I feel like I am a contributing member of society again and feel like I am making a difference in children’s lives every day!"
School Success Story
“Without the School Success Partnership it would have been nearly impossible to overcome these hurdles we have jumped through!”
Crawford County RSVP volunteer, Terry Tody, was recognized at the Michigan Community Action (MCA) Awards in Lansing for her extraordinary volunteer service with the Crawford County Community Christian (CCCC) Help Center, Mt. Hope Lutheran Church, and the RSVP Advisory Council.
Teenage Mom's Story
"The day I found out I was pregnant with my little girl at fourteen years old was the day I thought my life was over. In reality it was just beginning. My goals are little, but they take a lot for me. I am going to graduate while raising my daughter and working part time. I am going to be attending the fall for Criminal Justice and going after being a corrections officer. I would not have made it this far if it wasn’t for the School Success Program. She pushed me from 8th grade all the way to 12th grade and never gave up on me once or closed the door on me and I can’t thank her enough for that."
Head Start mom so impacted by preschool program, now enrolled in college to become a teacher! Christy was not excited when she was asked to volunteer in her son’s classroom. She didn’t feel she was good with kids. Yet, over time, she started to LOVE being in the classroom. “I learned a lot, saw a lot, and my son was succeeding!” The NEMCSA Head Start teacher noticed the impact Christy was having in the classroom, and mentioned to her that she was there as much as the teacher. This statement ignited a spark! Christy is currently enrolled in a Bachelor’s program studying elementary education, hoping to impact children (and their parents’) lives as much as the Head Start program impacted hers!