For the third year in a row, the school hosted a Home Visit Latino Outreach program to connect incoming Latino families with staff and students. The cozy conversational event was conducted in mostly Spanish to appeal to Latino parents who were interested in learning how to get involved at the school.
Different Latino families who have students attending LAHS offered their homes as the site for the event on Thursday evening. History, English and AVID teachers, along with administrative representatives went to each house to talk about how education works at the school and answer any questions.
Although both incoming freshmen and their parents were in attendance, the questions and presentation were more guided toward helping the parents become more aware and involved their children’s academic life.
“We want the parents to know how the school works and we don’t want anyone to feel left out,” senior Jennifer Gonzalez said. “Sometimes the parents think that because it’s high school they don’t need to look up grades or anything, but that’s actually what we hope to encourage [them to do].”
At the beginning of the meeting, folders were given to the parents that included the school handbook, information on SIS, information on AVID and Latinos United Moving Forward (LUCHA), and a pamphlet on parenting tips. The folder also contained a list of suggested questions that the parents were able to ask questions about, leading to a focused discussion on exactly what the Latino parents were looking for.
“[The meetings] are helpful because the parents and kids get to meet people who are already at the school and they get to know resources and see friendly faces,” Assistant Principal Perla Pasallo said. “[The meetings] also are to show the parents that we really care and that we want their kids to succeed.
The administration, LSU and other Latino members of the school have been hosting these Latino Outreach Home Visiting meetings for the past three years. According to Pasallo, the effort on the school’s part has paid dividends.
“We have a lot more participation from parents now and its gone up and up so we can tell it means a lot to them,” Pasallo said. “We finally have parent volunteers that are Spanish speaking and we’ve never had it before.”
The school is continuing to work to improve its outreach to the Latino community by hosting a variety of small and large events. Participation has steadily increased in these events as over 400 people attended the Latino Awards. It holds high hopes for the upcoming celebration festival on Thursday, May 5.