Massachusetts Partnerships for Youth Hosts Webinars on Equitable Virtual Learning Plans, Well-being, and Mindfulness

WAKEFIELD — Executive Director Margie Daniels is pleased to share that Massachusetts Partnerships for Youth (MPY) hosted four webinars this week, reaching more than 2,500 educators, including psychologists, social workers, guidance counselors, nurses, teachers, administrators, and paraprofessionals.

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.

On Monday, May 11, a webinar titled “Ensuring Equitable Virtual Learning Plans During the COVID-19 Pandemic” reached 665 professionals, and featured Assistant Professor of Educational Leadership at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte, Racial Equity Consultant and author Tracey Benson.

“Hosting remote workshops has allowed us work with a broader range of presenters, as physical distance is no longer a barrier,” Daniels said. “As a result, we’re easily able to work with phenomenal presenters we may not have worked with before, like Tracey. He was able to share a rich knowledge with participants that is truly critical as they work to ensure their remote learning plans are equitable during the school closure.”

“MPY provides a forum for expert educational consultants from the field to share best practices and lessons learned as they’ve assisted school districts to navigate the transition to virtual learning,” Benson said. “The format of the virtual workshops enables experts to share useful practices and strategies, while also actively engaging with participants to discuss current hurdles and challenges in the field.”

On Tuesday, May 12, a remote workshop titled “Comprehensive Care Coordination During Physical Distancing” featured speakers including Bridge for Resilient Youth in Transition Program (BRYT) Director Paul Hyry-Dermith, BRYT Network Family Engagement Specialist Megan Harding and BRYT Associate Director for School Support Katherine Houle. The event reached 590 participants.

MPY also hosted a remote workshop on Thursday, May 14, titled “Enhancing Well-being Through Mindfulness During the COVID-19 Crisis” featuring Ivy Child International Founder and CEO Rose Felix Cratsley. Approximately 660 participants took part.

“Ivy Child International is thrilled to partner with MPY to provide mindfulness tools and well-being resources to support teaching and learning during the COVID 19 pandemic,” Cratsley said. “MPY is a leader and resource for youth, health and safety and continues to serve and address the relevant needs of our community to best support students, educators, system leaders and their families.”

“Rose’s presentation was deeply insightful and provided participants with information and resources that will be tremendously helpful moving forward with well-being and mindfulness efforts,” Daniels said. “We organized these webinars to support educators during this unprecedented time, and each session provides people with tools they can immediately implement.”

A webinar held Friday, titled “Strengthening Our Resilience in an Uncertain Time: Practical Strategies and Inspiration for You and Your Family” featured speaker Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and Consultant for the Psychiatry Department at Cambridge Health Alliance Nancy Rappaport. The event reached 626 participants.

“Educators need quick, easily accessible practical information which builds the confidence necessary to support students in this pandemic,” Rappaport said. “By energizing our educators for the long haul and fortifying them with valuable knowledge, MPY provides critical support to ensure our educators, students and families will rise to these challenging times, ensuring their students will thrive.”

About the Massachusetts Partnerships for Youth, Inc.

Massachusetts Partnerships for Youth, Inc. is a non-profit 501c(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.

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