WE Embrace Equity: Latino Parent Tech Nights at Sunset High School
"Todos somos estudiantes, todo somos maestros" – We are all students, we are all teachers.
At Sunset High School, this is the motto at the monthly Latino parent meetings. For the past five years, Latino parents have met once a month to keep informed about what is happening at the school. Each month, parents are asked what topics they would like to discuss and the issue of Chromebooks coming home quickly became a very popular request.
Sunset High School is a 1 to 1 Future Ready school where all of the students are given a Chromebook to use during the school day as well as to complete homework in the evenings and on weekends. Maria Samoya, High School Bilingual Liaison, reached out to Future Ready Curriculum Coordinator, Matt Hiefield to brainstorm ways to educate Latino parents about technology use in the home.
"We need to provide parents with the information and tools they need to make their students successful. In this case, we saw the need to learn about technology because this is something their students will be using in the home," says Samoya.
"Maria has built a really good community and trust with the Latino parents, and they believe in the idea that education can make life better, they see that the way things are going with technology, they can't be afraid of it and have to learn along with their children," says Hiefield.
Maria and Matt applied for and were awarded a Nike School Innovation Grant to support the evening meetings and are being assisted by the District's Office of Equity and Inclusion and the Future Ready Team. Childcare is provided and a translator is available to assist in the communication with parents.
At the meetings, parents are given lessons in Chromebook basics like logging on and charging. They are also given tutorials on how to log on to the District and school webpages and how to access Google Translate to view the pages in Spanish. Student and teacher volunteers walk the parents through how to log on and access ParentVue and StudentVue and how to have conversations with their students about their attendance and grades.
Another important topic of discussion is digital citizenship and Internet safety. Topics include cyberbullying, password security, District Internet filters and boundaries.
"Sometimes students have trouble at home because parents don't want them to use the technology, but if parents learn the importance of their children doing research and investigation and how the technology is going to help them to improve their grades, they will be supportive of them. It is our responsibility to educate them and give them understanding so they can be more supportive of their children," says Samoya.