NLP defines leadership in our context as students and parents being courageous, positive influencers in their community. Leadership is one of the most fun and practical aspects of our ministry with immigrant kids and families. It looks like coaches making a leader at soccer practice a team captain in a game. It looks like NLP alumni volunteering as an NLP ambassador at an event or serving in a summer staff role. And sometimes, the Lord provides unique but very clear ways to engage our kids and parents in leadership opportunities.
This past spring, NLP parents found out that there was a proposal to merge one of their primary elementary schools with another school due to decreased enrollment, and to move it over a mile and a half out of the immediate neighborhood. As you can imagine, that’s a pretty startling proposition for any parent. For our parents, there were concerns about the practical implications of the school leaving the neighborhood that included student involvement, attendance, and parent engagement. East Elementary itself has a long standing history of being a minority-inclusive establishment of Littleton, which has been extremely beneficial in helping our families navigate cultural dynamics. At the time of proposal, we informed and helped organize several parents to show up to a district open house meeting so they could share their thoughts with folks on the district boundary committee. Boy, did they show up! They were nervous but bold as they spoke with committee members as well as a LPS board member. Everyone who knows these parents was so proud of their courage to share their ideas, through language barrier and in a system that is completely foreign. What an amazing parent leadership opportunity!
Well, this proposal disappeared from the website. Simultaneously the first COVID stay at home order occurred, so we thought the proposal was off the table. Turns out, COVID just postponed the dialogue and board decision. Unfortunately, it was just proposed again a couple weeks ago and a decision from the school board will need to be made in April.
This coming Monday, we have been invited to a meeting with two members of the School Board, LPS Superintendent, the Director of Elementary Education, the COO of LPS, and an Elementary School Principal. We have since organized representation from NLP moms, board members, and staff to share some thoughts with these LPS leaders. These courageous moms will be sharing their perspective on how a school moving out of their immediate neighborhood would impact them and other immigrant families. It is a privilege to prepare moms to meet with district leaders, with a posture of humility, gratitude, partnership, but also confidence to share their experience and perspective.
Please pray for confidence and clear channels of communication. Pray that the Lord would empower and give moms the right words to express themselves. Pray also for an attitude of humility and listening from the LPS leaders. Lastly, pray for a spirit of collaboration and unity between parents and LPS leaders for the ultimate good of immigrant kids and parents thriving in Littleton Public Schools.
Blessings to you all,
North Littleton Promise builds life giving relationships with immigrant kids and their families and mobilizes local partners to transform the northeast Littleton neighborhood through Christ.
P.O. Box 3543
Littleton, CO 80161
5397 S. Fox Street
Littleton, CO 80120