Presented to Jennie Fiddimore and Kim Bansal
The November, 2017 LWPTSA Council You Rock! Award went to Jennie Fiddimore and Kim Bansal, two PTSA parents who presented at October’s Welcome Events for New and International Families. A joint Lake Washington School District/LWPTSA Council effort, the information provided by mainly district, but also PTSA and a few outside speakers on a myriad of topics was especially tailored to families who had recently moved to the Lake Washington School District (LWSD). There were 180 attendees in all, most of whom had moved here from other countries.
Jennie Fiddimore is one of several parents who had voiced an interest in doing more for international newcomers to the district. An educator by training, Jennie had moved here from Sydney just over a year ago and became involved in Rose Hill Elementary and Middle School PTSAs. As the title of Jennie’s presentation, “America 101”, implies, this talk shared basic need-to-know facts about the United States. In her talk she coached parents on relevant topics such as American holidays, money, geography and basic vocabulary, and on how to go about cover these with their children in fun, playful ways. She also touched on topics of safety, sports teams, politics, making friends, and more.
“Relocating to the Pacific Northwest”
Kim is currently a PTSA member at Inglewood and Eastlake schools and was active at Samantha Smith for 9 years, receiving the Golden Acorn Award there. She initially developed her “Relocating to the Pacific Northwest” (PNW) talk as part of Smith’s International Festival, noticing that information about our own beautiful region right here was missing! Kim’s presentation included information on groups and clubs for parents, travel tips from the region, hiking and camping and other activities unique to the PNW, with loads of beautiful photographs!
Both Jennie and Kim identified a need in their school communities that wasn’t being met. And they decided to do something about it, something we felt was well worth sharing with our new and international parent community and now with our larger PTSA community. Sometimes connecting with families means providing them with some helpful information that might not otherwise be readily available to them. Jennie and Kim’s examples show that PTSA can be a great resource both by and for parents!
Submitted by Irene Neumann, Co-Chair, You Rock! Award