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WORKSHOP TOPICS

Target Audience: Administrators, Faculty, and Staff 

 

“A Guide to Helping At-risk Students: Nobody Told Them They Were Somebody” © 

          School systems across the country are seeking alternative methods to address the critically high populations of at-risk

          and traumatized youth. These students are falling through the gaping cracks of disparity in our education system, causing              the achievement gap for many subgroups to widen exponentially. Educators are frustrated because low test scores,                        apathy, disciplinary infractions, grade retention, high absenteeism, and dropout rates obliterate academic gains. Nobody              Told Them They Were Somebody is a motivational, inspirational, and informational resource guide for educators, policy-                makers, and parents of students facing copious barriers hindering their success. In the book, the author encapsulates the              educational triad of theory, research, and practice as he provides practical methods supported by personal experiences                and research to reach those students who are considered marginalized -- just as he was during his early childhood years                until someone convinced him he was somebody. This book accentuates the infinite power of relationship, relevance, and              rigor to catapult the least, the last, and the lost to heights unknown regardless of their socio-economic status. 

 You Can’t Teach Me If You Can’t Reach Me: Making Connections to Increase Achievement

          While pursuing quality instruction, many disregard the science supporting positive teacher-student connections to achieve            that goal. This is particularly detrimental when the achievement gap widens because of increased at-risk and                                    traumatized students. Neuroscience focuses on the brain and its impact on behavior and cognitive functions. The                            Neurosequential model developed by Dr. Bruce Perry and the Sequence of Engagement serves as a guide for educators              to understand the importance of reaching students prior to teaching them. 

Restorative Practices/ Restorative Justices

         They are utilized to develop community and manage conflict and tensions by repairing harm and restoring relationships.                Humans are more likely to make a positive change in their behavior when those in positions of authority do things with                   them, rather than to them or for them. Restorative practices is a field within the social sciences that teaches us how to                     strengthen relationships between individuals and social connections within communities.

Relationship-Driven Instruction

In the quest to ensure data-driven instruction occurs, many educators have lost sight of the importance of positive teacher-student relationships. Mistakenly, copious numbers of educators are attempting to obtain educational rigor without possessing an adequate understanding of the necessity for genuine teacher-student relationships. Research has proven positive teacher-student relationships promote student academic achievement, such as higher grades and test scores. Students are more motivated to learn and engage in classroom activities when their teachers genuinely care about their well-being.

Classroom Management Program (Classroom "Success" Program)

The Classroom Success Program is a classroom management program for novice teachers. The blueprint will equip beginning educators with pertinent knowledge that extends beyond establishing a set of rules to hold students accountable. Additionally, it will provide teachers with strategies, evidence-based research, best practices, and a framework for classroom success that supersedes classroom management. Implementing a CSP will result in an effective and engaging learning environment.

The duration of the program is six weeks.

Diversity Equity and Inclusion

          Schools play a critical role in shaping the future of our society.  As such, it is of utmost importance that they embrace                      diversity and prioritize equity over equality.  Failing to do so can have detrimental consequences for students in the short             and long term.  One of the most common mistakes made by educators is adopting a one-size-fits-all approach to various               issues, such as teaching methodologies, assessment techniques, and disciplinary measures.  While this may seem like a fair           and equal approach, it often leads to exclusion and marginalization. 

         When students feel that they do not belong or that their needs are not being met, they become disengaged from learning,           leading to higher absenteeism rates, emotional stress, and limited cognitive resources.  In this session, participants will                   learn about the evolving classroom audience, gain strategies to embrace diversity, and effectively include all learners in                 planned experiences.  

         (Certificate in Diversity Equity and Inclusion from Cornell University)                           

Social-emotional Learning/Mentoring Program

Social-emotional learning (SEL) teaches students to develop self-awareness, self-control, and interpersonal skills essential for success in school, work, and life. An SEL Plan implemented with fidelity will improve academic achievement, reduce negative social behaviors, which will lead to reductions in discipline problems, and assist in creating a positive school climate. These plans focus on problem-solving, self-regulation, impulse control, and more. SEL has five primary components: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision-making. 

The duration of the program is 26 weeks. Faculty/staff receive initial training on SEL implementation, and selected students receive 24 weeks of SEL instruction, mentoring, and monitoring. 

Don’t Judge Me Until You Have Lived with Me: Understanding At-risk Students

A significant obstacle plaguing educators is understanding and motivating African American male students to reach their academic pinnacle. Participants engage in a powerful lecture series that educates teachers about the historical and cultural barriers which lead to poor academic performance. Learn how empowerment programs, increasing expectations, cultural learning experiences, and a new self-identity can close the achievement gap.

Mentorship “One Caring Adult Program” (School-wide/System-wide)

If I “Reach One,” I can “Save One.” Students need someone in the building to serve as their advocate. Implementing a student mentoring program fosters the relationship between the teacher and student while providing a mentor within the school setting. Research substantiates that the presence of one or more caring and committed adult in a child’s life increases the likelihood that children and youth will flourish and become productive adults.

Leadership Development Program 

The Leadership Development Program is for aspiring administrators, assistant principals, and other system leaders in the school district. The program will assist decision-makers when selecting, recruiting, developing, and retaining school/system leaders. Current and aspiring leaders become students again to ensure the district has the caliber of leaders needed for sustainable growth. The topics will include Planning for Continuous Improvement, Teaching and Learning, Human Resources Development, Diversity, Community and Stakeholder Relationships, Technology, Management of the Learning Organization, and Ethics.

The duration of the program is 4-6 sessions.

Leadership Coaching for Principals, Assistant Principals, and Leadership Teams

Possessing over 20 total years of building-level leadership experience and serving 16 of those years in the capacity of a school principal, Dr. Pharrams understands the intricate dynamics of school leadership and the necessary components one must possess to be a successful administrator. His coaching program is designed to help administrators achieve the highest leadership quality and accountability levels. The premise of the coaching experience rests in the belief that a "growth" mindset is optimal when compared to one that is "fixed."

(More topics available upon request)

Target Audience: Administrators and Building Leadership Teams 

 

Situational Leadership (Identifying and Strengthening Leaders)

Are you adequately equipped to tackle situation changes each day? Prepare yourself for leadership that is flexible and transformational through situational leadership. Supporting, Directing, Delegating, and Coaching are critical components of successful leadership and must be executed strategically when collaborating with educators in the building.


Training Leaders to Lead

The "train the trainer" model is adapted for leadership training to empower and engage leaders. This session is for novice and experienced leaders looking to strengthen their leadership skills and develop a winning team. Practical leadership skills that will shift and influence the mindset of leaders will be the focal point of this session. It is ideal for assistant principals aspiring to become principals. Stephen Covey's "7 Habits of Highly Effective People" is a vital component of this training. 


Shared Decision-making: “Working with me…not for me”

Collaboration is the key to building robust support systems within an organization. Shared decision-making is a powerful strategy that involves everyone and creates a TEAM environment. When you work with me and not for me…you are less likely to work against me.

(More topics available upon request)

Target Audience: District Level 

 
Disproportionality in Student Discipline

Across the country, systems are cited for the disproportionate or unequal utilization of disciplinary consequences. This occurs when there is an overrepresentation or underrepresentation of a particular subgroup. Participants in this professional development training will gain a deeper understanding of these unethical practices and learn strategies and examine best practices to avoid future violations. 

Building a Framework for Alternative Placement Programs

Alternative education should be just that…an alternative to traditional teaching and learning. Improving the academic performance of students who learn and behave differently can be challenging; however, by implementing individual learning plans and developing strategic frameworks, students can succeed. Design a program without limits using creative strategies to impact learning.

Alternatives to Suspensions

Improve student behavior utilizing researched-based strategies which offer creative and innovative approaches to eliminate discipline infractions. Evolve from implementing harsh punishments that subsequently lead to legal consequences, increased drop-out rates, and expulsion to developing programs resulting in positive behavior support systems and high academic student engagement.

Discipline Paradigm Shift from Punitive to Non-traditional 

         Exclusionary disciplinary punishments (such as in-school suspension or out-of-suspensions) preclude students from
         participating in educational development occurring within the classroom setting. Restorative practices represent a positive           step toward helping all students learn how to resolve disagreements appropriately, take ownership of their behavior, and               engage in acts of empathy and forgiveness. Additionally, individuals gain an appreciation for the importance of                               faculty/student relationships in reducing disciplinary infractions.

 
       (More topics available upon request)

Target Audience: Student Body 

Gift Management

Every student has a "gift" and can learn how to manage theirs today. We all possess unique talents that we can utilize to accelerate our success. These gifts are often misused or left unused by students and teachers who fail to recognize the power of their "gift." Learn how to assist students in identifying and optimizing this exceptional potential.

 

From Trauma to Triumph: Making Connections that Increase Achievement

Hear this life-changing story about a young man who did not allow poverty to sideline his dreams or sidetrack his pathway to success. This testimonial offers an emotional yet inspiring account of the value of education. The presenter will take you on his journey from a statistic to Ph.D. and ignite each audience member with a passion for learning.

Bitter or Better!

Struggles will ultimately cause an individual to retreat or succeed. Either they will corrupt their views on life by infiltrating the mind with bitterness or propelling them towards greatness. The outcome is determined by the individual's reaction to the specific circumstances. Dr. Pharrams will captivate the audience while simultaneously challenging them to become the best version of themselves. Students will leave inspired to excel beyond their current affairs.

(More topics available upon request)

Target Audience: Parents


Allowing Your “Son” To Become a Man

We often hear the cliché “boys will be boys.” Knowing when to allow their son to become a young man is an onerous decision. Parents glean how young black men and fathers make pivotal contributions to the transformation from boyhood to a young man.

 

How May I Help You?

How can Administrators help struggling learners, troubled youth, and frustrated teachers? Help is on the way through learning support for all stakeholders. These support systems are built and sustained through collaborations between community agencies, local businesses, and city leaders. Learn how to effectively help and not hurt our students and teachers by establishing the necessary support systems that foster success.


Parental Engagement

Parental involvement enhances academic performance and positively influences students' attitudes and behavior. A parent's interest in and encouragement of their child's education can substantially affect their attitude regarding school, classroom conduct, self-esteem, absenteeism, academic achievement, and motivation. The lack of parental participation contributes to the poor performance of many students. Dr. Pharrams works with school leaders to develop a parental involvement program framework and leads the parental engagement workshops and trainings to better equip parents/guardians with best practices to support their child.   

Individual session or series available.

(More topics available upon request)

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