UW Tacoma was borne of an engaged community, which continues to inform our orientation today. We recognize that the most successful UW Tacoma community partnerships are transformative and result in each partner achieving more together than alone.
Through this Community of Practice (CoP), we strive to bring folks together from Tacoma and the greater South Sound region who share a common interest in advocacy, service provision, research, and/or teaching on the topic of immigration, youth, families and school communities to share and support each other through action.
Share pertinent experiences, knowledge, questions and resources related to Language Access for students and families in the K-12 System.
DETENTION AND DEPORTATION
Share updates, experiences, and resources related to detention and deportation practices and policies locally and throughout the country.
Share pertinent experiences, questions, and resources related to Higher Education and Immigration (particularly pertaining to immigrant student experiences but not exclusively.)
POLICY AND ADVOCACY
Discuss important issues related to immigration policy and advocacy locally and beyond and provide updates to group members. (Some overlap with detention and deportation group)
HEALTH & WELLBEING
Discuss important issues, questions, and resources related to health and well-being of immigrant children, youth, families and communities with an emphasis on our local communities and resources.
4/1/2021 - Introductory Meeting
Main Topics of discussion: Introductions
Get to know one another and connect about what we are doing in our respective work and communities.
Co-create a plan for gathering data, sharing immigration resources and supports with our communities, and identify possible immigration task forces or affinity groups.
Make a plan for our future meetings and how we can support one another and collaborate in meaningful ways.
Main Topics: Discuss each of the following -
What concerns do you (or the organization that you represent) have with respect to the health and wellbeing of members of local immigrant communities?
What relevant resources do you know about that promote health and wellbeing?
What current or future initiatives are you a part of (or would you like to be a part of)? Are you interested in collaborating with other folx from this group? If so, in what particular area(s) and/or capacities?
Main topics of discussion:
Comment on Biden Administration’s draft regulations to govern the DACA program
School opening & lack of advocacy for immigrants i.e. interpreters, liaisons, bilingual teachers and staff
Pressure at the School Board level
Need for a key report that shows the inequity of accessibility
Stanford Children study data
School Leadership’s generalization of how to support English Language Learners (ELL)
Taking time to identify who the kids are and different compositions of each school
Puyallup Public Schools is building a Dual Language Program this year
Interested in connecting with and hosting dual language student teachers
Increase in diversity at Puyallup Public Schools
Over 70 languages in their ELL program
Would like to invite someone to speak to the Diversity Committee
Building pipeline of teachers
UW Tacoma School of Education’s new Education major and new Latino minor.
Making connections with the school that’s producing these future teachers
Internships, volunteering, para educators
Julie Aguirre, Ph.D. Faculty Director of the Teacher Certification Programs & Professor
Topics of discussion:
Some of us are immigrants; lived experience
Language access (perhaps reaching out to WASCLA--Washington State Coalition for Language Access)
General health and wellbeing of immigrant communities in the South Sound
COVID health inequities
Exploitative labor practices
Encouraging Latinx civic engagement
City of Tacoma and internships/career focus (especially for BIPOC students/alumni)
Building leadership capacity for the community/communities and university’s role in creating positive relationships/connections with the local community
Ensuring the incorporation of voices of various local immigrant/refugee communities (beyond just the Latinx population)
The notion of Tacoma as a “welcoming city” and how to create a context in which immigrant communities can thrive
Policing and respecting rights
Utilizing and understanding appropriate data (e.g., Latinx community as 11% of Tacoma [?])
1/19/2022 - Language Access
This Month’s Focus: Language Access
Develop specific strategies and action items to address the ongoing need for advocacy and support of students and families whose primary language is not English within our local school districts AND elsewhere
Discuss potential collaborations among members of this group for initiatives like documenting what services and resources are currently available at local schools or other organizations, which services and resources are lacking, and collecting data regarding inequities related to linguistic accessibility
Discuss ideas for actionable recommendations related to developing--and communicating to school districts and other relevant organizations--best practices for supporting English Language Learners and their families individually and institutionally
Designing Language Access is a cross-institutional and community-based research and consulting group who work to improve language access in the Puget Sound for communities who speak languages other than English. Using methods from user-centered design, we are creating tools and resources for organizations working towards language justice.