Partnering With Communities, Part 1: “You Matter” Postcards

Xavier Reed

by | 09.22.19

Xavier Reed is an educator in Minnesota. Follow him on Twitter @XavierReed_.

As educators, we work every day to create an environment where everyone feels he or she belongs – and a big part of that is partnering with students’ families. One small thing we do in my community is send “You Matter” postcards home to every student during the school year, celebrating who they are.

What has really worked for us is setting aside five to 10 minutes at the beginning of grade-level team meetings for writing these positive messages. We drop off the postcards with one of our office clerks, and she takes care of them from there. We hand the postcards directly to kids who are homeless or living in transition, and most of the time, those notes make it home because the students are proud and excited to share them.

We’ve gotten feedback that parents are noticing the postcards coming home and that they’re really appreciative. There was even one parent who shared that she’d been going through a hard time in her own life, and she put the postcard up at her job as her own motivation to continue to work hard and to always keep her kids at the forefront of her mind. I knew postcards were positive for the families, but hearing a story like that takes it to the next level – it shows it’s something they really care about and that they’re thinking about.

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