Connect with a Learner Advocate
Each child’s journey from young learner to young adult is uniquely their own. Supporting your child through this process can be challenging, especially for working parents.
Making decisions about learning is complex. Every family could benefit from individualized support.
Our Learner Advocate Network (LAN) guides learners and their working parents in forging a purposeful and relevant learning path by supporting them in making decisions about learning that happens both in and outside school.
RESCHOOL partners with employers to offer the services of learner advocates as a free employee benefit, recognizing that juggling a job with parenting is hard. RESCHOOL is currently working with employers at Saint Joseph Hospital in Denver and Lutheran Medical Center in Wheat Ridge.
When employees’ children are safe, and participating in meaningful learning experiences during the day, employees are more present and happier at work.
Learner Advocates Partner with You and Your Child to:
- Surface their learning goals, challenges, and interests;
- Access educational resources and opportunities, within and beyond school;
- Tackle learning challenges and barriers they are facing related to their education;
- Broaden their networks and develop new connections.
Get to Know some of the Families
Get to Know Some of Our Learner Advocates
Jasmine is a recent high school graduate. When she first met with her advocate during the fall of her senior year, she expressed an interest in becoming a dental hygienist or dental assistant. Jasmine also expressed an interest in traveling and seeing new parts of the world.
Jasmine and her advocate looked at three local schools, one community college and two technical/trade schools, where she could become a dental assistant. Her advocate passed along application, financial, and general program information for Jasmine and her mother to review together. Jasmine’s advocate also introduced her to dental organizations who travel overseas to bring dental care and needs to communities as a possible future volunteer opportunity given her interest in traveling and becoming a dental professional. Jasmine’s interests have turned into actionable exploration for continued education and potential career opportunities.
Jasmine originally planned to start her dental assistant journey after graduation, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic she and her mother decided it would be best for Jasmine to start her dental program at a later date. Jasmine is currently working at a local restaurant and saving money until she starts school next semester. Life and her post-secondary goals are inextricably connected and while Jasmine is managing all of it, her advocate is checking in periodically to support her in sorting through those complexities.
When Malena first met her Advocate, she needed to secure special education services for one of her two sons. She felt overwhelmed and unprepared to navigate the education system and advocate for her son. Two years later, Malena is navigating meetings fully aware of both her and her son’s rights, has an understanding of the curriculum, an ability to clearly communicate her goals for her son and knows what her role is in the process.
Malena’s Advocate also connected her with the Stanley Marketplace, a community hub where she and the boys can meet other people in the community and explore new experiences. The boys loved going to the MakerSpace camp where they learned to work with a 3-D printer. The kids have also attended camp two years in a row at Avid4Adventure and The Art Garage, utilizing scholarship money ReSchool has raised, and discounts Malena applied for through the programs.
Malena has since soared with confidence as a parent and in her ability to network a system to get what she needs for her children inside and outside of school. She has begun to share her experience, recommendations, tips and tricks on accessing outside learning opportunities with her friends, family and colleagues.
She has become an advocate herself, enhancing the lives of other children through her relationships and sharing of knowledge. which helped make transparent all the steps he’d need to take to pursue a career as a game designer. Together, they researched colleges with strong computer science programs, but with scholarships available to lower the cost.
Amadi is a high school senior and first generation American. His mom, Zuri, immigrated from Ethiopia with an elementary education. She signed up for the support of an Advocate at work because the college process confused her and she wanted to be sure Amadi was on the right track with college applications.
Amadi is deeply passionate about game design, and while he intended to go to college all along, he’d never met with a college counselor and the financial aid deadlines were quickly approaching.
His Advocate connected Amadi with a tool called Couragion which helped make transparent all the steps he’d need to take to pursue a career as a game designer. Together, they researched colleges with strong computer science programs, but with scholarships available to lower the cost.
Amadi is now a sophomore at University of Colorado- Colorado Springs. He had a wonderful freshman year and is excited for his future in Game Design. His Advocate is working with him to find an internship for Summer 2020 and to gain first-hand experience in the field. His post-secondary experience is aligned with his skills and interests.
Carmelita works with high school students in the Learner Advocate Network, connecting them to resources and supporting them in making decisions about their future and pursuing their interests. Carmelita also works on projects and operations with RESCHOOL’s partner organization, the DK Foundation.
Prior to this, Carmelita was an event planner for corporate, nonprofit, social and entertainment groups at the Hotel Monaco-Denver. A Colorado native, Carmelita holds a B.S. in Business Administration and a master’s degree in Public Administration from the School of Public Affairs at the University of Colorado: Denver. As a graduate student, Carmelita completed her capstone project with New Legacy Charter School. Carmelita sought to better understand the barriers that pregnant and parenting students face that prevent their consistent attendance in school. By learning from student-led conversations and best practices locally and nationally, Carmelita made recommendations to promote higher attendance rates among New Legacy students and their young children.
Paola leads and coordinates the Learner Advocate Network (LAN) that supports families as they navigate learning for their children. Paola also co-leads the Learning Community Initiatives Project. She focuses on authentic partnership with families, community and family-facing organizations. Paola is interested in supporting and broadening the learning landscape for providers and families.
In addition to being a Director of Family and Community Partnerships with the RESCHOOL team, Paola serves on the board for the Colorado Soccer Foundation and Mountain Mamas. She supports Museo de las Américas on its Strategy Committee, Park Hill for Equity for Education Shared Resources Task Force, and is a Fellow in Climb Higher Colorado’s Systems Impact Institute. Paola has served on the Teach for America Alumni Advisory Board and the Denver Public Schools Application Review Team. She is also a founding board member of Denver Discovery School. Paola taught in a variety of bilingual school settings in East Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Denver and remains a strong advocate of bilingual education. She received her BA in Art History from the University of Notre Dame and a Masters in Education with a focus on Literacy and Language Acquisition from San Francisco State University.
Paola is committed to advocating for and creating diverse learner-centered educational environments that are supportive of students and families, who have been systematically marginalized. She believes that students and families thrive and continue to develop their unique voice in diverse settings that are carefully developed to counter systemic biases.
Partnering With Employers
The RESCHOOL Learner Advocate benefit is currently offered at two Denver metro-area hospitals: Saint Joseph Hospital (SJH) in Denver and Lutheran Medical Center (LMC) in Wheat Ridge.
Employees seek RESCHOOL’s support for a variety of needs, such as:
- Navigating school choice or transitions between schools.
- Advocating for children with special needs and understanding Special Education Services and the Individualized Education Program (IEP) process.
- Accessing learning resources and experiences that align with their children’s interests, including when kids aren’t in school and their parents are working (e.g., summer, after school).
- Providing resources and guidance to young adults (children of employees) who are looking at their options after high school graduation.
- Finding resources to alleviate barriers to accessing learning like language and transportation support and scholarships.
SJH and LMC employees can follow the RESCHOOL Families Facebook group to get up-to-date information and learning resources.
If you are an employee at SJH or LMC, and have a child between birth to 18, you are eligible for this benefit. To reach an advocate to discuss your needs, please fill out our interest form and one of our advocates will be in touch.
Are you a Denver area employer who is interested in learning more about how to offer this benefit to your employees?
Find Learning Opportunities
Finding learning opportunities your family cares about should be simple.
The DISCOVER learning resource helps families and young people find relevant learning opportunities easily. We want you to spend more time actually doing activities rather than figuring out how to locate opportunities.
We work with learning providers to make sure families can discover an array of online, at-home and in person offerings in a simple and intuitive way. We believe learning that happens in our community and beyond should be readily accessible at your fingertips.
This tool is designed for families to discover activities provided by local organizations in the Denver-Metro area.
Easy to Use
The DISCOVER learning resource gives families an easy way to learn about activities provided by many organizations so you can decide what programs and activities best suit your family. Please contact the provider directly to learn more about their offerings and program availability.
Ready to DISCOVER learning?
Receive Learning Dollars
Cost should not prevent young people from learning.
Youth spend 80% of their waking hours outside of school. Many learners take advantage of this time to pursue passions, expand relationships and networks, and develop new skills. But it can be expensive. This world outside of school has become more than a nice-to-have. Having access to it is critical for every young person’s future.
Learning Dollars provide funding to offset the costs and can be used to pay for resources and experiences children need in order to stay engaged in fun, interesting and important learning. RESCHOOL provides learning dollars to eligible families that can be used to pay for…
Sign up for our newsletter to be notified when Learning Dollars become available.
Choose the Right School
Your child and your family’s needs come first when choosing a school.
Colorado families have the option to participate in School Choice, which allows students to apply to attend a public Kindergarten-12th grade school located outside of their immediate neighborhood or school district.
School Choice Resource
There are so many things families consider when choosing a school. Most important is what YOU need and desire from a school.
RESCHOOL created the School Choice Resource to support families and young people in finding the school that is the best fit for them. It can be used as the first step in the school choice process so your priorities remain at the center as you learn about different schools.
Coloradoans may also choose non-public school options such as homeschool or private schools.
The resources RESCHOOL created can be used to explore public and private school options.
Learn more about how we’re supporting families to access meaningful learning.