Ulster BOCES Receives Prestigious Cambiar Thrive Grant to Enhance Student Engagement, Intervention, and Outreach

Ulster BOCES Receives Prestigious Cambiar Thrive Grant to Enhance Student Engagement, Intervention, and Outreach

Ulster BOCES was recently awarded the prestigious Cambiar Thrive Grant, a significant milestone in the organization's commitment to fostering student success through enhanced engagement, intervention, and outreach initiatives. This grant represents a pivotal moment for Ulster BOCES as it continues to strive toward its mission of ensuring that all students receive the support they need to excel academically and personally.

 "This grant allows us to deepen our engagement with students and families, ensuring that every child receives the individualized support they need to thrive. It's a transformative step in reinforcing our holistic approach to education," said Dr. Jilliane Berardi, Assistant Superintendent of Special Education and Pupil Services. 

Central to the implementation of this grant is the appointment of a dedicated Ulster BOCES case coordinator, whose role will be instrumental in coordinating engagement, intervention, and outreach efforts across all student-based programs. “Adding an Outreach Coordinator to our student support model enables us to uplift and honor our commitment to whole child wraparound education,” said Berardi. “This opportunity paves the way to strengthen learning outcomes for our exceptional students, provides much-needed support for families, and grows our teaching and learning community from within.”

David Goho, Assistant Principal at Ulster BOCES Center for Innovative Teaching & Learning, was an integral part of the initial outreach efforts from March 2020 through June 2021 that inspired the grant application, noting that over 1,000 home visits throughout Ulster County were conducted in that time. 

After witnessing the success and value of those past efforts, Goho is excited to have someone onboard dedicated to this work, which will empower Ulster BOCES to better connect with students, understand their unique needs, provide tailored support to help them thrive, and ensure timely intervention when needed. The new position, he says, will be able to “review the engagement, work with teachers and social workers to get the 'story behind the number,' and determine what approach might be necessary to increase engagement.”

“Engagement is the gatekeeper to ensuring that we are meeting the needs of all students," said District Superintendent Dr. Jonah M. Schenker. "When we, as adults, create the supports and interventions—as well as maintain the ability to shift what we do each day so we are ensuring that we are engaging all students—we are moving past just measuring attendance to thinking about learning. This grant award brings us one step closer to being able to provide the outreach needed to ensure students are able to show up and engage in their learning."

Rebecca Anderson, Grant Coordinator for Ulster BOCES, stressed what an exciting opportunity this is. "This grant allows us to take all the amazing ways we were able to connect with students and families during the pandemic and reinvent them for today's educational setting," Anderson said. “This is just another example of how Ulster BOCES is putting families first and constantly seeking opportunities to embrace the spirit of all children being fully engaged and establishing clear communication to help build bridges between school and home.”

For more information about employment opportunities at Ulster BOCES, visit ulsterboces.org/careers.

 

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