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Relief for the Very Young and Restless The Behavior Clinic celebrates 10 years of making a difference
also inside Meeting the challenge in Catholic schools Counselors as change agents
Beyond our mission of teaching, research and service, the college endeavors to be present to our local community, all in the interest of social justice. In short, we aspire to Be The Difference.
No kidding, not a day passes that I’m anything but proud and grateful to be dean of Marquette University’s College of Education. Even with the occasional setback, however challenging, my professional life is simply blessed. It’s one that affords me the chance to work with wonderful members of our academic community — students, professors, staff, administrators and alumni — not to mention all of our partners and friends in the metropolitan Milwaukee region. I can honestly say that the work we do together is not only meaningful and gratifying to me, but, far more important, it’s impactful to the place we call home. In this issue of Education Magazine, you’ll have the opportunity to read about some of this exciting work and two important anniversaries. Beyond our day-to-day mission of teaching, research and service, the college endeavors to be present to our local community, all in the interest of social justice. Whether our commitment to serve manifests itself in supporting K-12 Catholic education, helping at-risk readers for the past two decades in our Hartman Literacy and Learning Center or rescuing families whose children exhibit serious emotional issues at our Behavior Clinic during the past 10 years, our aim is always the same: to make the world a better place starting right here. How, you ask? Well, among many other efforts, we’ve taken a leadership role in Milwaukee Succeeds, the large community partnership aimed at improving education in our area that is being led by the Greater Milwaukee Foundation and several other key executive partners. We contribute significantly to the Greater Milwaukee Catholic Education Consortium to help our Catholic schools in the Archdiocese with professional development, faith formation and organizational effectiveness. We work with the West Allis-West Milwaukee School District in the areas of school counseling and mathematics education. We enlighten, engage and entertain thousands of readers each week with our Marquette Educator blog. We partner with the Milwaukee Public Schools’ Hopkins Lloyd Community School and put our Marquette stamp of quality on Teach For America corps members in our region. We’re even conducting a feasibility study for a Cristo Rey high school in Milwaukee, a unique Jesuit school that would make a college-preparatory curriculum and a corporate work-study program an option for children and families who otherwise could not afford the opportunity. In short, the College of Education aspires to BE THE DIFFERENCE. After reading more about just a portion of our work, I hope you’ll agree that WE ARE. Sincerely, Bill Henk Dean of the College of Education Marquette University
table of contents
Marquette University College of Education Office of the Dean 561 N. 15th St. Walter Schroeder Health and Education Complex, Room 124 Milwaukee, WI 53233 414.288.7376 marquette.edu/education Dean of the College William A. Henk, Ed.D. Editor: Lori Fredrich email@example.com Advising Editor: Stephen Filmanowicz
Noyce Scholar Program brings real life to the classroom; Hartman Center celebrates 20 years of life-changing literacy instruction.
Research and Innovation
Copy Editor: Becky Dubin Jenkins Art Director: Karen Parr Education Magazine is published annually for alumni, friends and supporters of the College of Education at Marquette University. We welcome feedback from our readers. Please feel free to contact us and share your ideas for people and topics you’d like to see covered in future issues.
Counseling students gain real-world experience with client advocacy.
Meeting the Challenge in Catholic Schools
The College of Education trains future Catholic leaders; GMCEC partnerships enhance school performance; Cristo Rey explores options in Milwaukee.
Improving Children’s Lives
The Behavior Clinic marks a decade of groundbreaking work in childhood mental health; new assessment tool gauges progress in young clients.
A brief look back reveals 90 years of excellence in education.
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Ready to Teach
the Next Albert Einstein or Marie Curie What if old high-rise buildings could be turned into vertical farms to help fight world hunger? Can you imagine being able to turn pond scum into green fuel? Or rearranging the molecules of your blood to fight off deadly diseases?
Noyce Scholar Program prepares future STEM educators None of these ideas is all that far-fetched. In fact, these and countless other life-changing innovations are taking shape right this moment. But where do these great minds come from? And who trains them to imagine the future? Teachers, of course. And Marquette is training some of the best. Take Ben Calvopina and Preston Koch, for example.
Photo by Ben Smidt
Calvopina and Koch are part of the university’s Noyce Scholar Program, a National Science Foundation grant-funded collaboration between the colleges of Education, Engineering, and Arts and Sciences. Noyce uses a uniquely adapted cooperative education model to provide science, math and engineering students with intensive field experiences in education that dovetails with classroom instruction to meet the Wisconsin state standards for teaching licensure. The program allows students to complete their content-area degree and STEM teaching certification in five years while providing scholarship support for the students’ final years of study. Preston Koch (left) and Ben Calvopina benefit from the real-world experience the Noyce Scholar Program offers.
“In high school, I was always told I would be a good teacher. But because I was good at math and science, and my father went to school for engineering, I came to Marquette for engineering,” says Koch, Eng ’13. “I liked that I was able to diversify my education by adding an education major, and the grant money offered was also an incentive.”
The Noyce program provided Koch funding for Project Lead the Way certification, helping him implement a PLTW principles of engineering course at Pius XI High School, where he is student teaching. Calvopina, Arts ’13, a physics and education major, is student teaching at the Milwaukee High School of the Arts, helping-inner city youth imagine themselves as scientists. He spent the summer at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colo., completing a highly selective nine-week STAR research program designed to give teachers experience in a lab setting. During the program, Calvopina worked with a team to develop grapheme, a material used in solar cell technology. “My mentor at the lab, Justin Bult, was very enthusiastic about my time there and went out of his way to show me as many things as he could,” Calvopina recalls. “I was even invited to go to SLAC, a very respected lab near Stanford University, to learn about X-rays and how they can determine the bonding structure of a material.” He thinks making the connections between real-world research and classroom labs will give his students a better idea of what a career in science is like. And he credits Noyce with helping him make that realization. “The Noyce Scholar program really opened doors for me,” he says. “Everything from getting me into the STAR program to allowing me to get real-world experience in high-needs schools and connecting and learning from other educators. Last year, Preston and I were allowed to teach a mini-unit on particle physics at the Milwaukee Academy of Science. We got first-hand experience with what works and what doesn’t work. I cannot think of a single assignment that taught me more about what it is to be a teacher.” (Lori Fredrich)
20 years of life-changing literacy instruction
Photo by Ben Smidt
In 2009, the Baez family moved to Milwaukee from Puerto Rico. Not only was Wisconsin’s climate completely unfamiliar to them, but none of the family members spoke any English. As a second-grade student at Bruce Guadalupe Community School, Newton Baez attended the Hartman Literacy and Learning Center’s after-school tutoring program. Two semesters later, Newton’s English reading and writing skills improved exponentially, particularly his fluency. Today, he is thriving in school and still enjoys his tutoring sessions in the Hartman Center.
During the 2012–13 academic year, the Hartman Center is celebrating 20 years of teaching, service and research. Since its founding in 1992, it has Hartman Center founder and original director helped 2,000 Milwaukee children like Newton Lauren Leslie set the center’s work in motion. benefit from free, quality literacy instruction. At the same time, undergraduate teachers in training benefit from working with faculty members to review lesson plans and supervise tutoring sessions. Research examines factors that relate to growth in children’s reading abilities and the effectiveness of teacher training in literacy instruction. (Calley Hostad)
Want to be a part of the Hartman Literacy and Learning Center’s mission? A donation of $20 will purchase three T-shirts for children participating in the after-school tutoring program. Learn more about the work of the Hartman Center and donate online at muconnect.marquette.edu/hartman.
ATTEND MISSION RECOGNITION 2013 The College of Education cordially invites you to mark your calendars for our second annual Mission Recognition Event, which will be held Tuesday, April 23 in the Henke Lounge and Lunda Room of the Alumni Memorial Union. The event honors individuals and groups from within and outside the Marquette community who have made a significant contribution toward advancing the social justice mission of the college.
COMMON CORE IS FOCUS OF 2013 THOMPSON LECTURE Peter McWalters, former president of the Council of Chief State School Officers and Rhode Island commissioner of elementary and secondary education, will deliver the 2013 Tommy J. Thompson Lecture at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 19 in the AMU ballrooms. In his address, McWalters will highlight the potential positive impact of common core implementation on teacher preparation and instructional effectiveness. This lecture is open to the public. Please respond to Amy Porter at firstname.lastname@example.org.
CALL FOR NOMINATIONS: SEEING THE DIFFERENCE IN OTHERS Do you know an alumnus/a who, through personal or professional achievements, truly embodies the mission of Marquette? Please nominate him or her for an Alumni National Award. Nominations received this year will be considered for an award in 2014. Visit marquette.edu/awards to view the awards criteria and access the online nomination form. And save the date: The College of Education Alumni Awards will be held on Thursday, April 25.
research and innovation
Counselors as change agents
Master’s students take advocacy from textbook to real world
Photo by Ben Smidt
Tamara Trusewych seeks to build community awareness about the homeless.
By Lori Fredrich Accessing translators for refugees? Helping improve community understanding of the homeless? It’s all in a day’s advocacy work for Marquette’s counseling students. When counseling master’s student Rev. Charles Mnubi, S.J., came to Marquette from his home country of Tanzania, he had little notion that he’d spend part of his time working to assist other Africans with the immigration process. “A Jesuit friend of mine was helping families he knew from Africa acclimate to the Milwaukee area, but he identified that there were some issues he couldn’t help out with,” Mnubi says. “So he asked me to help.” Mnubi, Grad ’13, who was beginning his internship at Sebastian Family Psychology Practice, soon realized that the situation was far more complex than he first had thought. “I volunteered to talk with a group of refugees during a gathering of the Pan-African Community Organization,” he recalls. “Every group had translators except the group of refugees from Sudan and Somalia.” Even worse, because of their inability to communicate, these immigrants were suffering from depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, adjustment disorder and general anxiety and were unable to seek treatment.
In committing to helping reduce these barriers that prevent refugees from accessing needed care, Mnubi played a role that is an essential part of counseling, even if it didn’t involve the comfortable couch and box of tissues typically associated with therapy sessions. He was acting as an advocate. According to Associate Professor Dr. Lisa Edwards, advocacy is an important aspect of counseling that is often overlooked. “Those who advocate for clients may work with or on behalf of their clients, and the effects of their advocacy might be seen at the client level, the community level or in the public arena,” she says. “Counselors who do advocacy can empower their clients, bring wider attention to issues within agencies and communities, and inform policy.” In fact, Mnubi’s intervention became a class project for Edwards’ multicultural counseling course. Mnubi approached his colleagues at Sebastian for cooperation, reached out to partner agencies in the community and began connecting them with individuals previously barred from their services. Thanks to his outreach, the clinic has been able to connect with additional native African therapists and establish additional touch points with Milwaukee’s African refugees. “All along, I knew that being an advocate was being a go between, but I’ve grown to understand that being a mediator
The goal of her project, she says,
The Importance of Advocacy
is to bring together the statistics with the real stories of these people.
for others is often about simply being there,” Mnubi reflects. “There are often more basic issues that need attention before we can get to the heart of more complicated problems.” Tamara Trusewych, another counseling student enrolled in Edwards’ course, felt similarly about her work at the Guest House, a nonprofit advocacy group and homeless shelter for men. While running a support group at the clinic, Trusewych, Arts ’07, Grad ’13, says an overwhelming number of the men she counseled expressed feelings of being invisible, overlooked and judged by the community. As an undergraduate, she remembers being told how to behave around the homeless individuals who might be walking on campus. “We were pretty much told to ignore them,” she says. “That’s a problem. That attitude just plays into the issues these men are already dealing with. For example, they report that the majority of people on the street around campus don’t usually respond when they say hello.” Trusewych acknowledges that it’s naïve to expect everyone to feel comfortable interacting with potentially troubled strangers, but she also noted that a simple hello can go a long way in bridging societal gaps. So when she was assigned an advocacy project for Edwards’ class, she knew just what to do: formulate a presentation about homelessness that could be used to create awareness among Marquette students, Guest House staff and community members. She spent most of her winter break filming videos and gathering information to tell their stories. “Advocating with the client, for the client, made sense,” Trusewych explains. “So did advocating at a very high societal level.”
Counselors are trained to provide services to those dealing with mental health concerns. They also are charged with acting as advocates for their clients. But what does that mean? “It involves shifting the focus from traditional face-to-face counseling that addresses factors that reside within the individual to include efforts that address environmental and systemic issues,” explains Dr. Lisa Edwards, associate professor in counselor education and counseling psychology. Despite increased attention on the importance of advocacy as a core aspect of a counselor’s professional identity, studies suggest that most counseling trainees do not participate in advocacy activities or they report that they lack training in advocacy. To address those issues, Edwards added a project component to her multicultural counseling course that forces students to grapple with the issues of advocacy. So rather than just reading about and discussing the topic, students are bringing life to the course content. “Students and practitioners alike don’t always know how they can effect change, and sometimes they believe that small changes are not valuable,” she says. “But raising awareness about mental illness, providing training about a health topic or advocating for more resources can make a difference in promoting wellness in our society.”
Trusewych says mental illness, substance abuse, a reduced sense of independence and a convoluted sense of what it means to be a man play into people’s motivation to move forward from homelessness. The goal of her project, she says, is to bring together the statistics with the real stories of these people.
Rev. Charles Mnubi, S.J., assists refugees with struggles adapting to life in the U.S.
Photo by Ben Smidt
“If I can present this information to students at Marquette, and it results in even one student saying hello to one of our guys, this project will have been a success,” she says.
Meeting the Challenge in Catholic Schools
Extending Catholic Schools a L
Whether itâ€™s training new leaders, providing support to K-12 Catholic schools or assisting with community-based research and outreach, the College of Education is ever active in responding to the changing face of Catholic education.
Courtesy of St. Robert School â€” Photo by John Sibilski
Meeting the Challenge in Catholic Schools
Photo by Ben Smidt
Training the Leaders
By Erik Gunn By the time she enrolled in the College of Education’s master’s program, Jen Vega had packed almost a lifetime’s worth of teaching into 15 years. Starting as a public school substitute teacher, she went on to be an instructor for middle and high school magnet programs and then an entry-level administrator. Five years ago, she came to Mother of Good Counsel, a K-8 Catholic school on Milwaukee’s northwest side, as a middle school math teacher and math specialist. Teaching had rewarded her repeatedly with opportunities to help young people build their skills and grow up, thought the El Paso, Texas, native. But she needed to go further. “If I’m a teacher, I can only affect what is in front of me,” says Vega, Eng ’91, Grad ’13, speaking with rapid-fire intensity between student conference meetings one morning at the school. “That’s the constraint of just being in the classroom.” Vega opted for the master of education in educational administration program, which typically takes three years to complete and enrolls teachers and administrators seeking certification as a principal or a director of instruction. Offered for more than two decades, it has evolved to incorporate a focused and hands-on curriculum and a deeper engagement with Catholic social teaching. Graduates qualify for state licensure, a credential parochial schools increasingly prefer because it strengthens their case for accreditation.
What we try to do at Marquette is c
who see inclusion o
Photo by Ben Smidt
as a fundamental t
With its Catholic roots and reputation for quality, the master’s program has also become a singular source of leadership for area Catholic schools. The program now groups aspiring leaders from Catholic systems in a cohort so they can benefit from shared perspectives. And at least 35 program graduates serve as principals or heads of schools in the Milwaukee Archdiocese alone.
“That’s almost a third of our principals — that’s a pretty important reality,” says Dr. Kathleen Cepelka, Grad ’92, school superintendent for the Archdiocese and an adjunct instructor in the program. “The professionals who come through the program are thoroughly prepared in areas of philosophy, mission orientation, finance, law, curriculum, school governance and basic leadership theory.”
At least 35 program graduates serve as principals or heads of schools in the Milwaukee Archdiocese alone.
‘That’s almost a third of our principals — that’s a pretty important reality,’ says Dr. Kathleen Cepelka, school superintendent for the Archdiocese.
Along the way, students in the 33- to 36-credit program learn politics, community relations, curriculum planning and supervision. They gain real-world experience through practica and complete the program with a portfolio presentation to demonstrate they’ve mastered relevant state standards. But there are better ways to capture what really distinguishes the program. Dr. Melinda Skrade, chief administrator at Pius XI High School and adjunct Marquette faculty member, tells this story. Her Marquette students were reviewing student handbooks when one zeroed in on a rule telling pupils they could not wear “school shoes” to gym. Those words threw a spotlight on what had been until then an abstract concept: how schools can inadvertently reinforce social stratification. “Imagine how embarrassing it is to be the student who has one set of shoes,” says Skrade, Arts ’81, Grad ’87, ’04. “These practitioners realized how often the school handbooks reinforced inequitable practices that ultimately ‘other’ students.” In short, she says, the Marquette program combines a focused, skills-oriented education with a challenge to examine the assumptions students bring to the schools where they work. Students in the master’s program, most of them already working professionals in education, embrace that challenge. “You can see the fireworks going off in their heads,” says Skrade, recipient of the college’s 2012 Educational Policy and Leadership Achievement Award. “They want to talk about real-world situations.” Continued on page 12
s create and support school leaders
n of those on the margins
l tenet of their leadership.
The POWER of partnership
— Dr. Martin Scanlan
Marquette and local higher education peers join to give Catholic K-12 schools a boost By Nicole Sweeney Etter
When Shorewood’s St. Robert School started to see more students with special needs, it was clear that it needed to make changes. Fortunately, the Greater Milwaukee Catholic Education Consortium was a ready resource, and St. Robert has since become a leader in including special needs students in the classroom. “It’s been exciting for me to see the really big things we’ve accomplished with the support of the GMCEC,” says Lauren Beckmann, the school’s principal. New challenges have transformed the face of Catholic education — changing demographics, financial pressures, and a shift toward more lay teachers and administrators, to name a few. But Catholic K-12 schools in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee now have five powerful partners: Marquette, Alverno College, Cardinal Stritch University, Marian University and Mount Mary College. It’s the first time all the colleges in a diocese have teamed up in this way, a model that is attracting national attention. Since it launched in 2007, the GMCEC has worked collaboratively with the Milwaukee Archdiocese Office for Schools to serve more than 500 teachers and administrators from 80 archdiocesan schools. The consortium, which was kick-started with funding from the Stollenwerk Family Foundation, concentrates on three key areas: professional development, Catholic mission and identity, and organizational effectiveness. Marquette has played a pivotal role. Consortium coordinator Dr. Jennifer Maney, Grad ’91, ’08, works out of the College of Education, and the university has helped with everything from raising nearly $100,000 for programming to designing a new website. This fall, the GMCEC hosted a three-day summit on school governance at Marquette, attracting 150 Catholic education leaders from across the nation.“It really put Marquette and the consortium on the national map of Catholic education,” Maney says. Acknowledging “pockets all across campus that have helped with so many initiatives,” Maney is especially appreciative of College of Education faculty — including Dr. Martin Scanlan, Dr. Francesca Lopez and Rev. Jeffrey LaBelle, S.J. — and Dean Bill Henk, who have shared their expertise with educators from Catholic K-12 schools. “I’ve been excited that one of the main issues the consortium is focusing on is building the capacity of schools to support a diverse population of students, to serve kids on the margins, whether they’re on the margins for poverty or disability or language,” says Scanlan, an assistant professor of educational policy and leadership whose research focuses on students with special needs. At St. Robert, changes are already under way. Instead of relying on what Beckmann calls “a specialist hero” to take care of students with special needs, classroom teachers are being trained to serve a diverse range of students. Last school year, St. Robert transformed its reading curriculum to a workshop model so teachers can better serve students of varying levels. A longtime first-grade teacher told Beckmann, “Never in all my years have I seen students learn so much, so fast, and have so much fun doing it.”
Meeting the Challenge in Catholic Schools
Continued from page 10
Participants are steeped in a value that “undergirds the education,” says Dr. Martin Scanlan, assistant professor of educational policy and leadership: embracing diversity in all its forms. “What we try to do at Marquete is create and support school leaders who see inclusion of those on the margins as a fundamental tenet of their leadership,” he says. That principle is grounded in church social justice teachings that are in turn founded on “the religious value that everyone is made in the likeness of God and all are equally welcome.” The emphasis on inclusivity resonates among Catholic K-12 educators in the program whose schools have grown more diverse, says Jeff Monday, Grad ’98, principal of Marquette University High School who received the 2002 Young Alumnus of the Year Award from Marquette’s then-School of Education. One reason for that demographic shift is growth in the state’s Milwaukee Parental Choice Program, which covers costs of low-income Milwaukee students in participating private schools. College of Education faculty are wellequipped to help leadership students embrace this change. “There was always an emphasis on care for the individual at Marquette,” says Monday. “That has transitioned into a more concrete curriculum.” In valuing inclusion, master’s students often turn conventional assumptions upside down. For instance, the view that pupils who enter school learning in a language other than English have a “language barrier” casts their own language (typically Spanish) as a deficit needing a remedy.
Photo by Ben Smidt
As an alternative, says Scanlan, educators can view knowledge of another language as an asset. Instead of viewing “bilingual education” as an accommodation, they can embrace a new model: the dual-language — or “two-way immersion” — school or classroom that nurtures lifelong use of two languages in the student and employs teachers who work in more than one language, too.
To further emphasize the importance of inclusion, Marquette’s leadership students conduct “equity audits” in the schools where they work. For hers, Sister Jean Ellman, SSND, Grad ’12, principal of Notre Dame Middle School on Milwaukee’s near south side, examined the cultural competence of Notre Dame’s majority Caucasian staff in its work with the school’s 99 percent Latina enrollment. Sister Jean was gratified to learn that her staff understood the importance of bilingual ability — both spoken and written — in the students. And members of the board of the school, which is not parish-affiliated, endorsed her proposal (inspired by her work with Scanlan) to configure a planned coed primary school as a dual-language school. Another skill contemporary principals need is collaboration. The cohort model that the program introduced in 2009 to group Catholic school professionals together for their course of study helps foster that. (Marquette master’s graduates work in public, as well as private schools.) Group work and constant cohort interaction help students share perspectives on issues that affect Catholic schools in particular and also build long-term professional and personal relationships. “One of the most amazing benefits of being part of this cohort is we have each other,” says Vega. After serving for more than 40 years as a Catholic educator, including three previous stints as a principal or co-principal, Sister Jean acknowledges she worried if she would be up to the intellectual rigor of returning to school. But she thrived. “They didn’t just lecture,” she says of the university’s faculty. “I liked being with the younger people. They were helpful to me. I got a lot of ideas on how to improve the school that I wouldn’t have had before. It really was stimulating.” As she moves toward her graduation from the program this spring, Vega has already had the opportunity to test her skills, serving as acting principal of Mother of Good Counsel during fall 2012 while the principal was on a medical leave. She’s prepared, she says, to be a middle school principal full time now and would like to return to a high school position in perhaps five years and to lead a high school in 10. “I have a really great handle on that 30,000-foot view now. I was a great teacher, but I was limited to the perspective of a classroom teacher,” she says. “Now I understand the whole weave and web of what a school is and how everything intermingles with each other. I feel 100 percent prepared for an administrative role.”
Now I understand the whole weave and web of what a school is and how everything intermingles with each other. I feel 100 percent prepared for an administrative role.
Courtesy of Cristo Rey Jesuit High School
Dr. Ellen Eckman, chair of the Educational Policy and Leadership Department, says the program extends the perspective of educators already focused on the long view. “I like to think they are more sensitive to what’s going on around them,” she says. “We really push for that. You have to be able to read beyond the headlines.”
Work-study meets college prep
By Chris Jenkins
As an undergraduate, Carlos Angeles spent time volunteering in the Milwaukee Public Schools system. He didn’t find many children there who considered college a realistic option.
Courtesy of Cristo Rey Jesuit High School
That was tough to hear for Angeles, who was the first member of his immediate family to attend college — something that might not have been possible without the education he received at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in Chicago. “I knew if there were a school like this in Milwaukee, things would be much different,” says Angeles, Arts ’10.
Cristo Rey opened doors for Carlos Angeles, Arts ’10.
A new Cristo Rey feasibility study introduces Milwaukee to an
innovative approach to Catholic education
Combining a Catholic college-preparatory curriculum with an innovative work-study program, the Cristo Rey model has an impressive track record of success for economically disadvantaged students in 25 urban high schools across the country. Of the students who make it through Cristo Rey’s rigorous program, 100 percent are accepted to college and 85 percent enroll. Now, with the blessing of Marquette President Scott R. Pilarz, S.J., the College of Education is assisting with a feasibility study to explore the possibility of establishing a Cristo Rey school in Milwaukee. “I think our president knows a very good school model when he sees one, and this is one of them,” says Dr. Bill Henk, dean of education. “When he came in and did an environmental scan of Milwaukee, I’m sure one of the things that he discovered very quickly was that we had an education landscape that was pretty deeply troubled.” Henk and Special Adviser to the President Dr. Jeff Snell are leading the study with Andy Stith, the study’s director. Stith, Comm ’01, was part of the team that launched a Cristo Rey school in Kansas City. If the idea attracts a critical mass of support from the community, education reform expert Robert Birdsell is optimistic that a Cristo Rey school could launch in Milwaukee as early as 2015. “Milwaukee fits a lot of the demographics that we’re looking for. There is a need, judging from my experience and from what we’re seeing early in the study,” says Birdsell, who was president and CEO of the Cristo Rey Network from 2007–12. Henk notes statistics that show Wisconsin has the nation’s largest achievement gap between
African-American and white students. One new school won’t fix that — but it could help. “My argument would be: To that one kid, it sure makes a difference,” Henk says. “And then it does that 400 more times. That would be pretty potent.” Cristo Rey has received national media attention for its work-study program, which requires students to work in an office job at a local business five days a month. “These are kids who unmistakably understand the value of an education because they’re working for their own,” Henk says. The money they earn covers the majority of their tuition, but the larger goal is to open students’ eyes. After a boot camp to teach basic professional skills — including how to tie a necktie or answer the phone — students are sent into the real world. “Their self-esteem goes through the roof,” Birdsell says. “They’re working in an amazing office, they’ve got their name at their desk, at their cube. For the kids we serve, this is like going into a new world.” How new? “One kid, I took up in an elevator, he started shaking,” Birdsell says. “I said, ‘Are you OK?’ He said, ‘How are we going to get down?’ He’d never been in an elevator.” To result in approval, the Milwaukee study will have to show that the community wants the school, identify a site and a school president, and get firm commitments from local businesses to support the work-study program. Other questions must be resolved: Would Cristo Rey qualify for public funding under local school choice program guidelines? And what religious order would serve as the school’s sponsor? “It’s a high bar,” Stith says. “But with the Cristo Rey Network, you can’t expect anything less, given the high bar we set in our schools.”
improving children’s lives
Relief for the Very Young
For 10 years, Marquette’s pioneering Behavior Clinic has been helping families and demonstrating the benefits of pediatric mental health counseling By Kate Venne and Lori Fredrich Juanita, a home health worker and Milwaukee mother of two, knew something was wrong with her younger daughter, Danielle. At only 1 1/2, Danielle would kick, bite and scream to get her way. “She was showing a lot of aggression, biting and hitting with her sister and me. She didn’t talk a lot, and she didn’t have a lot of words, so she expressed it in anger and tantrums,” Juanita recalls. “I felt I needed to take action.” At the urging of a parenting aid, Juanita contacted Marquette’s Behavior Clinic. Jodari Paulson, a family counselor at the clinic, suggested that Juanita ignore the tantrums and be consistent in her responses to Danielle. “We kept reminding Juanita: ‘It’s OK. You’re not hurting her when you respond this way.’ What was going to hurt her was if she grew up having those tantrums,” says Paulson. This year marks the 10th anniversary of Marquette’s Behavior Clinic, one of just a handful of pediatric mental health programs in the country. The clinic, which was founded by Dr. Bob Fox in collaboration with Penfield Children’s Center, was established to meet a grave need in the community. “For a long time, professionals did not think mental health problems could occur in younger children,” says Fox, a professor of counselor education and counseling psychology in the College of Education. “With all of the early brain development research as one impetus, we now know that what occurs in the first few years of life does have long-term consequences. Unfortunately, there still are precious few professionals who are trained to address mental health concerns in young children.” Fortunately, the field is gaining momentum that it didn’t have before. “There are some promising signs that more professionals are recognizing you can have a toddler with mental health issues,” he says.
About 10 to 15 percent of very young children have at least moderate behavior problems, such as longer, more severe tantrums. Fox says the children they work with have a noticeable issue that significantly interferes with the child’s development in life. If left untreated, about half of young children with behavior problems continue to experience problems through adolescence. “It’s not just the child who needs us. That’s why we focus on the family and going into the home, so we can see the dynamics,” says Fox. “When you ask the parent to play with the child and they say they don’t play with them anymore, we have to re-establish that relationship first.” By the third session, Fox says, counselors can tell if they’re making progress or if something is interfering with the treatment program that needs to be addressed. As much as 50 percent of the families drop out before completion. Sometimes the parents need to take a break before they finish. “It was hard for me at first. But I kept being consistent with what they told me to do, and it worked,” reports Juanita. One of the things she did was establish a time-out corner. For an 18-month-old, that can be a tricky concept to grasp. But, slowly, that, too, started to work. “She’s to the point now that she knows ‘no means no’ and that hitting is wrong.” Juanita, who spent seven hour-long sessions with Behavior Clinic counselors, is glad she persisted. “When I used to go out with my daughter, I’d be embarrassed. It made me not want to go anywhere, and I didn’t want to keep going through that,” she remembers. “At first I was like, ‘Who are they to tell me to let her cry?’ It was hard at first, but it got easier once I started seeing results.” Stories like that of Juanita and her family aren’t uncommon from a program that has paved the way for similar pediatric clinics across the country.
Photo by John Sibilski
“For a long time, professionals did not think mental health problems could occur in younger children” Behavior Clinic counselors Joanna Love and Jodari Paulson consult with clients Juanita and her daughter.
“When we became licensed by the state as an outpatient clinic, the state evaluator said he had never encountered a similar clinic in the state,” Fox recalls. “I know of a handful of clinics that exist nationally, and I think this movement will only grow in the coming years.” The clinic receives referrals from at least 50 Milwaukee agencies and must work at top capacity to put a dent in the number of cases it receives each week. At any given time, 30 to 40 families are receiving help from Marquette counseling students and full-time clinic staff. And there is still unmet need. Their work is a clear example of how the Jesuit tenet of cura personalis — which calls for treating people with respect for their unique qualities, gifts and challenges as individuals — plays out in the work of the College of Education. In addition to making a difference in the lives of families, the clinic breaks down barriers between the university and community itself. Best of all, news of the Behavior Clinic’s work has spread across the country and world. “At least weekly, I get requests for our program or our assessment instruments from all over the world,” Fox says. “I just responded to one from India. And it’s going to keep expanding. If you put a little prevention up front when children are young, you save a lot down the road.”
Breaking Ground with a New Assessment Tool The children with whom the Behavior Clinic staff work come from low-income families. In most cases, it’s a single mother raising multiple children under the age of 5. The stress of day-to-day living, compounded by a child with severe behavior problems, can seem insurmountable. “If we can get a kid behaving better, it’s a tremendous amount of relief on the family,” says program founder Dr. Bob Fox. Fox noticed that the assessment tools being used in the field were lengthy and too complex for parents to understand. So he and a doctoral student developed a screening instrument that makes family involvement in the assessment process more fruitful. Written at a third-grade reading level, the Early Childhood Behavior Screen assessment was piloted with a lower-income, less-educated population in mind. It measures 10 pro-social behaviors that counselors try to increase, such as “eats well” and “cooperates in getting dressed,” and 10 challenging behaviors that counselors work to reduce, such as “kicks others” and “breaks things.” Fox reports that the development of the ECBS was lengthy, taking nearly five years to bring to fruition. The tool’s main author, Dr. Casey Holtz, was a doctoral student working Dr. Bob Fox, Behavior Clinic under Fox’s tutelage at the time. Their work was supported Founder by a small grant from the Greater Milwaukee Foundation. Holtz, Grad ’06, ’10, also used his research as the topic for his doctoral dissertation. The ECBS is now part of the Behavior Clinic’s normal protocol and is used at each session to measure how the child is progressing. “The tool helps the parent or practitioner see if the child is outside the normal boundaries of behavior, but it also allows them to see signs of progress as well,” says Fox.
Hartman Center Milestones College of Education Milestones Behavior Clinic Milestones
The Reading Clinic trains graduate students for degrees and certification in reading.
The Education Clinic broadens its scope to include undergraduate training and tutoring in subjects other than reading.
Marquette begins offering a professional course in education.
Full NCATE accreditation is granted for programs in elementary and secondary teaching and school service personnel, including principals and guidance counselors.
The School of Education is established as a department within the College of Liberal Arts.
Courtesy of Marquette University
James F. Hartman endows the clinic with $250,000 to fund the Family Literacy Project, and the clinic is renamed for his father, Ralph C. Hartman, Law â€™31.
of education at Marquette
As the Behavior Clinic celebrates its 10th anniversary and the Hartman Literacy and Learning Center celebrates its 20th anniversary, we thought it would be a good time to look back at how far we’ve come.
THE HARTMAN CENTER
Marquette joins with four area Catholic institutions to form the Greater Milwaukee Catholic Education Consortium.
20th Anniversary Grant funding is secured for the Noyce Scholar Program.
The School of Education becomes the College of Education.
The college enters into an agreement to train Teach For America corps members.
The Milwaukee Cristo Rey feasibility study launches.
THE BEHAVIOR CLINIC
The Behavior Clinic opens at Penfield Children’s Center with a unique focus on pediatric mental health.
The Behavior Clinic transitions to a home-based delivery model for mental health services.
The clinic is approved as an outpatient mental health clinic.
Thanks to more than $2.3 million in external grants, the clinic serves nearly 300 children and trains 10 graduate students each year.
The agencies referring children to the Behavior Clinic increase to 40. The clinic serves
100 children per year.
The Behavior Clinic receives funding to add a bilingual counselor to its staff.
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