What does it take to disrupt poverty’s adverse influence on student learning?

The Community Action Poverty Simulation being hosted by Bedford High School on Wednesday, May 17, 2017 will attempt to help educators find answers to this question. Approximately 100 educators from six school districts will participate in this first tier of training that is being funded by a Disrupting Poverty grant through the Martha Holden Jennings Foundation. Participants from Bedford, Orange, North Olmstead, Painesville, Waterloo and Wickliffe school districts will meet in the Bedford High School gymnasium from 8:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon to gain a better understanding of poverty’s effects on student achievement.

Twenty stations will be set up around the gym staffed by some of the participants who will role play service providers, such as a hospital, school, grocery store, bank, daycare center, etc.  Other participants will be assigned to “family groups” who will be facing a variety of challenging, but typical circumstances as they try to live successfully on a limited amount of resources for one month. The simulation is broken into four 15-minute weeks in which the families will work, go to school, pay their utilities, buy groceries, get to the doctor as needed, and face other circumstances that may arise.  These may include such scenarios as:

1.    A single parent with limited resources and no transportation must find a way to get to work and get his/her child to daycare.
2.    An elderly person must find a way to pay for both utilities and medication.
3.    A young adult must care for siblings while his/her parent is incarcerated.
4.    An elderly couple must raise their grandchildren and deal with their own health and employment issues.

The Community Action Poverty Simulation is designed to help participants rethink challenges that millions of Americans must face each and every day, so they are better able to identify areas of change that can directly impact the effects of poverty on individuals, families and communities.

After going through this simulation, the participants will meet in small group breakout sessions to discuss the simulation and start framing the conversation they will take to their own districts regarding what they might do differently to assist their students and families that find themselves in these situations.

The next stages of training that follow the poverty simulation will focus on the 16 Strategies for Disrupting Poverty as presented in the book Turning High Poverty Schools into High Performing Schools, by William Parrett and Kathleen Budge. Additional trainings will follow through the summer and into next school year.


Back to School News     Print News Article
digital school network
cms login facebook twitter youTube intranet RSS
Heskett Middle School
5771 Perkins Rd.
Bedford Heights, OH 44146  

Phone: 440-439-4450 
Fax: 440-786-3572
Bedford Local Schools