WAKEFIELD — Executive Director Margie Daniels is pleased to share that Massachusetts Partnerships for Youth (MPY) hosted remote trainings on critical topics including how educators can address domestic violence, mental health and equity amid COVID-19 last week.
MPY began hosting remote workshops on March 24 after halting its planned in-person conferences due to COVID-19. With school facilities throughout Massachusetts closed due to the virus, MPY swiftly adapted and moved its programming online to offer educators resources to reach out and support students and families for the remainder of the school year.
“Our presenters last week discussed critical topics that educators are grappling with right now as a result of the school closure, including how to address the mental health needs of students and families, through fostering connections. Last week’s presentations also focused on defining equity leadership and how to access resources,” Daniels said. “There is a great need at this time among educators for support and professional development to ensure students are receiving assistance during this public health crisis, and these workshops are making a direct, immediate impact.”
On Tuesday, May 26, a webinar titled “Fostering Healing and Connection During and After COVID-19” featured REACH Beyond Domestic Violence Director of Prevention Programs Jessica Teperow, who presented a training on strategies educators may use to support students, colleagues and others affected by domestic violence amid COVID-19.
“I am so grateful to MPY for giving me the opportunity to speak to over 400 educators, clinicians, and administrators from all over Massachusetts,” Teperow said. “The impact of COVID-19 on families experiencing domestic violence cannot be overstated. During this time of distancing, restrictions, and limitations, it felt so inspiring to connect with so many amazing individuals and to share strategies to facilitate healing and connection with students, parents, and colleagues who are impacted by abuse.”
A webinar titled “Educational First Responders: Tending to the Basic Needs of Students and Families During and Beyond the COVID Crisis” held on Wednesday, May 27 featured Bridge for Resilient Youth in Transition (BRYT) School Support Specialist Sarah Rigney. During the webinar, Rigney empowered educators to act as “mental health first responders” and address the mental health needs of students during COVID-19.
“We are excited to share this educator-focused professional learning session, because we know that teachers and other front-line staff are really concerned about their students’ mental health and want to be equipped to help,” Rigney said. “We are so thankful to MPY for providing a platform that allows hundreds of professionals from across Massachusetts to learn together about this and many other important topics.”
On Thursday, May 28, MPY held two Massachusetts School Mental Health Consortium Meetings to promote an interactive discussion and learn more about the strategies available to support the mental health and well-being of students and families during the COVID-19 pandemic. Methuen Public Schools Director of School Mental Health and Behavioral Services John Crocker, with a team of collaborators, offered educators an opportunity to remotely learn about resources and network.
A webinar titled “Defining an Equity Leadership Agenda in the Midst of COVID-19” was held on Friday, May 29, featuring Founder and CEO of EJT Consulting LLC Erica Jordan-Thomas, who is also a doctoral candidate in education leadership at Harvard’s graduate school of education. During the event, Jordan-Thomas defined the relationship between equity and equality, reviewed a framework for school and district leadership and identified strategies educators could utilize regarding equity as well.
About the Massachusetts Partnerships for Youth, Inc.
Massachusetts Partnerships for Youth, Inc. is a non-profit 501.c(3) organization that provides training, fosters collaboration, and develops programming to increase the health and safety of students. Member organizations include more than 140 public school districts, charter schools, private schools, special education schools, educational collaboratives, and youth community service organizations in the Commonwealth. MPY is committed to bringing cutting-edge information and high quality trainings to constituents and endeavors to provide solution-oriented, community-based, multi-disciplinary approaches to reducing and ideally eliminating risky behaviors for youth.
The nonprofit is governed by a Board of Directors made up of school superintendents, police and fire chiefs, and other community leaders who work closely with MPY staff to deliver this mission.
To learn more, visit www.mpyinc.org.