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Welcome to the fall 2010 edition of the Challenge Success newsletter. We hope you had an enjoyable summer. We’ve been busy getting ready for an exciting fall season and are pleased to update you on what we have been doing as we continue to champion a broader vision of success for youth.
In this issue:
- Information about fall events, including our 7th annual fall conference at Stanford
- An update on our research efforts
- New staff to better serve you
- Other upcoming dates and announcements
Lots happening at Stanford this fall
We look forward to welcoming 11 new schools and 9 returning schools to Stanford on October 15th and 16th for our 7th annual fall conference. The Friday evening session is once again open to the public, and we hope you will join us from 7:00-9:30 p.m. in Memorial Auditorium to hear our keynote speaker, Dr. Wendy Mogel, clinical psychologist and New York Times best-selling author. Challenge Success co-founders Denise Pope, Madeline Levine and Jim Lobdell will present concrete, practical ideas to help families define success on their own terms and align their actions and decisions accordingly. Two student panelists will offer their perspectives on what success means to them, the pressures they face, and their coping strategies. We expect a full house so please register early at http://csplenary2010.eventbrite.com. Please note that there is another big event on campus that evening, so plan to come a bit early to secure parking. And look for signed copies of Wendy’s soon to be released book The Blessing of a B Minus along with copies of DVDs from our May 2nd parent education event in San Francisco.
Challenge Success, Stanford University School of Education, and Reel Link films are sponsoring a screening of The Race to Nowhere, followed by a panel discussion with SUSE Dean Deborah Stipek, Challenge Success Co-Founders, Denise Pope and Madeline Levine, and RTN Director, Vicki Abeles on December 2, 2010 from 7:00-9:30p.m. If you would like to join us in Cubberley Auditorium, please RSVP at: www.rtnstanford.eventbrite.com.
Challenge Success findings confirm the many benefits of engagement with learning
Research is an important part of what we do. We survey schools to help better understand the students’ experiences, and we apply what we learn to the schools in our program in order to make continuous improvements in policies and practices. This quarter we have been busy conducting school surveys and writing research articles that show the many benefits of engagement. When students are truly engaged in school – that is, when they see the value of the lessons, work hard to complete the lessons, and actually find enjoyment in the learning process, they tend to retain the information, cheat less, achieve more, and as we learned in our recent analyses, they also tend to show better mental and physical health. We presented these findings at the Society for Research on Adolescence conference in Philadelphia this spring, and we summarized these results at our April 2010 conference, helping schools to learn specific strategies to increase student engagement with learning. Over the past several months we also have:
||Conducted a record 7 school surveys to help schools learn the things they do well and address areas in which they might improve to increase student engagement.
Published our findings on student stress in Education Leadership and Education Canada, appeared on World News Tonight with Katie Couric, and been featured several times on KCBS to discuss recent adolescent health trends. You can access the research articles via our research publication page.
Hired additional research staff who are highly skilled statisticians and experts in qualitative research to allow us to run more sophisticated data analyses.
This fall Denise will present research at the Coalition of Essential Schools major fall conference and the East Bay Independent Schools Association fall symposium.
Welcome to new CS staff
We are delighted to announce that we have hired a part-time Schools Program Manager and a permanent part-time administrative associate as well as additional research staff. Amy Alamar, Challenge Success Schools Program Manager, has worked in the field of education for over 10 years with a focus on under-resourced students and constructivist education. Additionally, she has experience in classroom instruction, curriculum design, and professional development. With Amy on board, we will be better able to support our school teams and CS coaches. We are also pleased to welcome Sharon Greenstein to the CS team as our administrative associate. Some of you will recognize Sharon from our conferences: she has participated as a parent team member and has led the Los Altos-Mountain View School parent education effort. Sharon will support our daily operations and manage our website. Finally, we are fortunate to have Sarah Miles, Ph.D. supporting our research efforts. Sarah brings her knowledge of educational psychology and motivation, as well as her expertise in statistics, to help us move forward with our ambitious research agenda this year.
We are also delighted to announce that Brad Sachs, Ph.D., has joined our team of Research and Policy Advisors. Brad is a psychologist, educator, consultant, lecturer and best-selling author specializing in clinical work with children, adolescents, couples and families, and is also the Founder and Director of The Father Center, a program designed to meet the needs of new, expectant and experienced fathers.
Other Upcoming Events and Announcements
We will be offering our 6 week parent education course in Marin for parents in the Kentfield School District in February and March, and offering the course again at Stanford during the late winter/early spring. Please check our website for details.
Please look for the launch of our new website in a few weeks. We are working hard to make sure the new site is easy to navigate and provides you with all of the information you need. We would appreciate any feedback you may have; please email Maureen Brown at firstname.lastname@example.org with comments or suggestions.
Thank you to our volunteers! We are continually amazed by the support we gain from the larger community and cannot thank you enough for all that you do to help us further our cause. Whether you are helping us screen publications or newly published books, filming our conferences or updating our web content, we truly appreciate your efforts and know that you are a large part of our successful operation.
Our continued research and intervention work with schools and families relies heavily on private support. If you would like to make a donation to Challenge Success, please visit our donation page.
We look forward to seeing you all on campus in a few weeks for our fall programs!
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Challenge Success is located at
Stanford University School of Education
485 Lasuen Mall, MC 3096
Stanford, California 94305-3096