Operation Literacy Engaging Everyone

We don’t know his name, or that of his older sister, but we were still moved when he exclaimed, “I love Dr. Seuss! Daddy can I take this one?”

chapman-literacy1We glanced at one another excitedly as the boy clumsily pulled the Seuss work out of the book station we had just inaugurated. His sister found one, too, and was proud to be like her brother, book held high above her head.

Smiling, his father asked him which books he was going to bring back for other kids to take.

As they walked away hand in hand, the boy, his sister, and their father continued their conversation about books, and about reading. We were filled with a sense of gratitude for a moment that brought our vision of free neighborhood book stations to life.

These seemingly unplanned moments where learning connects families, communities, and each of us to a deeper self are what we live for as educators and future educators.

This year’s Literacy Alive! project brought many such moments to the members of Chapman’s Chi Beta Chapter.

Each year, the chapters of Kappa Delta Pi connect around a national literacy campaign called Literacy Alive! to “create programs and events in their communities that bring empowering literacy skills to their participants.” This year, more than 150 projects were submitted nationally, adding up to 57,052 people served and 44,625 books collected for distribution. As a chapter, Chi Beta was recognized for its partnership with a local initiative: Operation Literacy Engaging Everyone (Operation L.E.E.) in Anaheim, California.

Operation L.E.E.’s Facebook page reads, “We are a group of community members out to promote literacy and spread the love of reading in our community by providing book stations with free books.” The book stations are located at various homes and businesses in Anaheim, and represent a true community effort. A vision of local educators, the book stations are filled with donated books that anyone can borrow or take or donate. Operation L.E.E. started with five book stations and hopes to increase that number throughout Anaheim and in other interested cities.

chapman-literacy2Our first adventure with Operation L.E.E. was at the South Junior High School Service Day, where Chapman’s KDP members were tutored in making book stations by students. The amazing woodshop teacher, Chapman alumnus Matthew Bidwell, guided us around the classroom while seventh and eighth graders made assistants of us and demonstrated their mastery of carpentry. It was a fun and exciting day of building book stations from instructions, wood, and know-how.

As future educators, we talked about how it reminded us that our students will always be our greatest teachers, and that our classrooms can be spaces for doing good.

chapman-literacy3We also helped sort more than 500 donated books, prompting a recognition of our community’s generosity and spirit.

As book donations rolled in they were collected at the home of Operation L.E.E. leader, Juan Alvarez. A local educator and parent, Juan welcomed a collaboration with Chapman, and KDP members helped distribute books to book stations around Anaheim. Juan also welcomed us to his home, where we hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony for Operation L.E.E. at the location of the first official book station.

chapman-literacy4Here, Operation L.E.E. was presented with congressional recognition from Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez, and the book stations officially went live!

In recognition of the success of Operation L.E.E., KDP awarded Chapman’s Chi Beta Chapter with a Silver Award.

chapman-literacy5As the project continues to grow, you can help by donating books, providing funds or materials to build more book stations, or volunteering to host a book station at your home or business (contact operationleeoc@gmail.com).

It was exciting for us to help support local educators who are moving beyond their classrooms to make an even greater impact in their community. And we were able to practice engaged citizenship by helping local educators bring a model program into fruition.

In addition to strengthening our relationship with one of our partner districts in Anaheim, we also developed new partnerships with other collaborating organizations such as Los Amigos de Orange County and the Anaheim Public Library.

chapman-literacy6Toward the end of the ribbon-cutting ceremony, we had our serendipitous visitors, our first book station patrons, and they knew exactly what to do. For us, it was like watching from a distance—watching our efforts and those of the community sprout into an opportunity.

For the father and his children, it was a seemingly spontaneous moment to talk about reading.

But we saw meaning in our project and could envision many such moments happening at this book station and at others around the city. Operation L.E.E. had come to life, and Chapman’s Kappa Delta Pi chapter helped make it happen.

Guest author Anat Herzog is an educator who has a deep love for her students and their families. She is a doctoral candidate at Chapman University and Literacy Alive! Coordinator for the Chi Beta Chapter of KDP. Her eventual goal is to open a school based on the pedagogical principles of John Dewey and Paulo Freire.

Proudly announcing our 2015-2016 awards recipients!

Laura Perkins is the director of membership & chapter services.

We are excited to announce the recipients of the 2015-2016 Awards for Education Excellence given by Kappa Delta Pi.

These awards honor individuals and chapters for their significant contributions to the Society and the education world. Since 2014, we have been giving out four (4) of our coveted awards annually. The 2016 recipients of our annual awards are as follows:

Chapter Program Award
The Program Awards recognize chapters for demonstrating excellence in one of six program areas: service, professional development, fundraising, membership, communication, and education for sustainable development. These awards are designed for chapters that have exceptional programming and may or may not qualify for the Achieving Chapter Excellence (ACE) Award.

Phoenix Award for Chapter Improvement
The Phoenix Award recognizes those chapters that have taken significant action to improve their overall level of effectiveness in chapter management and programming.

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Distinguished Chapter Officer Award
The Distinguished Chapter Officer Award honors current or immediate-past officers who set positive examples for their chapters by representing the ideals of Kappa Delta Pi.

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Regional Chapter Counselor Award
The Regional Chapter Counselor Award recognizes one dedicated counselor from each region that excels in his or her role for that region. The counselors achieving this award are leaders who represent the mission and ideals of KDP and who have achieved excellence in the role of counselor.

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All award recipients will be formally recognized at Convocation 2017 in Pittsburgh, PA (October 26-28, 2017) as well as with a certificate and a spot on the KDP website.

Congratulations to all of our award recipients, and we look forward to continuing to recognize you in all of your successes along the way!

Is a KDP member the Best in Education?

escalante-gradillas-prize-banner-2016

When you think of an active K-12 teacher who exemplifies the profession and accomplishes more with less, who comes to mind? Certainly, that person is a KDP member!

Nominate that teacher for a $20,000 prize!

TheBestSchools.org invites the members and staff of Kappa Delta Pi to nominate outstanding K-12 teachers for the Escalante–Gradillas Prize for Best in Education. Awarded annually in alternating years to a school administrator or teacher, the 2015 prize went to principal Lisa Kaplan of Andrew Jackson School in Philadelphia. For 2016, a practicing teacher will receive the prize.

The Escalante–Gradillas Prize for Best in Education goes to an educator who exemplifies the same spirit as noted math teacher Jaime Escalante of Stand & Deliver film fame and his principal, Henry Gradillas. Escalante and his AP Calculus students achieved notoriety through hard work and devotion to excellence, overcoming numerous obstacles. TheBestSchools.org seeks the same in an educator you know—someone who achieves stellar results while accomplishing more with less.

Nominate a teacher through June 1, 2016!

Further details and nominating qualifications are at TheBestSchools.org site and on the informational guide found here. A panel of leading educators will award $10,000 to the selected teacher, with an additional $10,000 granted to that teacher’s school or district. Finalists will be announced September 1, 2016, with the winner chosen in early October 2016.

Feel free to share the following shortlink with others on social media: http://bit.ly/2016prize.
Also, send a tweet to let your followers know about the prize!

Good luck to all of the nominees!

You’re Award-Worthy, So Apply!

Recognizing excellence always has been a part of Kappa Delta Pi’s mission, and we consider it a privilege to recognize the important work that our volunteers and chapters do to impact their communities. The Awards for Education Excellence honor those individuals and chapters for their significant contributions to the Society and the education world.

You’re changing the world, so tell us how by applying for one of our many awards below!

To help you with completing the application(s), we are providing you with many resources—including the rubrics by which all submissions will be reviewed and scored. We encourage you to use the rubrics to make your application as strong as possible.

Annual Awards

The annual awards (below) are for the 2015–2016 academic year, and the deadline for submissions is Sunday, May 15 at 5:00 p.m. (EDT). Winners will be notified by June 1, 2016 and will be announced on the KDP blog and social media. Recipients will receive a certificate and will also be recognized in-person at Convocation 2017 in Pittsburgh, PA from October 26–28, 2017.


image1Chapter Program Award

Chapters can submit up to five programs for consideration—one in each of the following areas: Professional Development, Membership, Fundraising, Community Service, and Communication.

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the Program Award. When you’re ready, submit your application!


image2Phoenix Award for Chapter Improvement

Each year, we work with a number of chapters that find they have room for improvement. We are astounded by the efforts put in by chapter leaders to strengthen chapter-member engagement, establish programs meeting member needs, and identifying leadership opportunities for chapter members. Our intent with this award is to recognize those efforts and thank you for your service!

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the Phoenix Award. When you’re ready, submit your application!


image3Distinguished Chapter Officer Award

Having a strong, engaged chapter directly correlates with having strong chapter leadership. Among their various other responsibilities, chapter officers plan events, organize service projects, recruit new members, and maintain the sustainability of the chapter. The Distinguished Chapter Officer Award honors current or immediate-past officers who set positive examples for their chapters by representing the ideals of Kappa Delta Pi.

All of our 600+ chapters are eligible to submit one officer for consideration. Whose name will your chapter submit?!

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the Distinguished Chapter Officer Award. When you’re ready, submit her/his name and nomination!


image4Regional Chapter Counselor Award

Here at Headquarters, we always say (and strongly believe) that the sustainability of our chapters depends on the commitment and leadership of the dedicated Chapter Counselors and the mentoring they provide to the students and members.

How has your Chapter Counselor impacted you individually and the chapter collectively? Submit his/her name for consideration of this prestigious award!

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the Regional Chapter Counselor Award as well as the officer rating form. When you’re ready, submit her/his name for consideration!


Submissions for the above awards are reviewed by a panel of judges, and award-winning applications will be announced on Friday, June 1, 2016.


Biennial Awards

The biennial awards (below) are for the 2015–2017 biennium, and the deadline for submissions is June 1, 2017 at 5:00 p.m. Winners will be announced on the KDP blog and social media. Recipients will receive a certificate and will also be recognized in-person at Convocation 2017 in Pittsburgh, PA from October 26–28, 2017.


image5Achieving Chapter Excellence (ACE) Award

Established in 1995, the Achieving Chapter Excellence (ACE) Awards program recognizes KDP chapters that exhibit outstanding programming, membership, and leadership in support of the Society’s mission and strategic goals. Since its inception, chapters across the country have aspired to offer creative, purposeful programming and a full slate of chapter activities with a hope of earning this coveted award.

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the ACE Award. We encourage you to print a copy of the submission form and fill it in as you go before applying online. Applications open February 2017.


image6Rising Star Award for New Chapters

KDP welcomes several new chapters each year. The Rising Star Award for New Chapters recognizes these new groups that demonstrate outstanding management and programming in their first biennium following installation.

Chapters installed between June 1, 2012 and June 30, 2014 that have not already won this award are encouraged to apply.

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the Rising Star Award. Applications open February 2017.


image7O.L. Davis, Jr. Counselor of Distinction Award

This award honors Chapter Counselors with at least five years of KDP service and activity for their service, scholarship, professional development, outstanding leadership of the chapter, and mentorship of the chapter’s student leaders.

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the O.L. Davis, Jr. Counselor of Distinction Award. Applications open February 2017.


image8Lucinda Rose Counselor Award

The Lucinda Rose Counselor Award, funded by Drs. Vincent and Linda McGrath, honors an exemplary Counselor and chapter leader within Kappa Delta Pi.

Find the eligibility, criteria, and requirements for the Lucinda Rose Award. This is not an open nomination award.


image9Founders Awards

As a tribute to KDP’s founding members and their vision for the Society and its role in the field of education, these Founders Awards honor current educators at the local, national, or global level living these visions today.

For more information, visit the Awards and Honors page.


The Chapter Services staff looks forward to seeing all of your hard work reflected in the award applications! It is a pleasure to read about the chapter successes and about the individuals who have made a positive impact on the chapter.

For more information about the Awards for Education Excellence and to view the recipients of past awards, please check out the Recognition pages of our website.

 

Stevenson University Members are Real Hallo-winners!

A tiger, a witch, and a robot walk into a library . . .

No, it’s not the beginning of a joke. It’s what happens when members of the Stevenson University Kappa Delta Pi chapter host their annual Boo Bash at the Finksburg Branch of the Carroll County Public Library in Maryland. Each year, these creative and caring students develop and present a Halloween program for Finksburg area residents. And the kids love it. Participants are invited to come to the event in image-2costume. (Hence the tiger, the witch, and the robot from the beginning of this post.) Members of Kappa Delta Pi pick favorite Halloween titles to read out loud for a fun and funny story time. And there is always a host of easy and interesting activities for the young ones. Ranging from paper plate jack o’ lanterns to lollipop ghosts, the children love the opportunity to make festive crafts.

These students provide a great service by coordinating this program at the library. First, the event proves to be a good draw to get folks into the branch. Who doesn’t love a festive autumn story time? And once there,image-1 patrons can begin to see (if they didn’t already know) how the modern library is so much more than just books. It’s story times and crafts and gathering together to enjoy the season. It’s family and friends cherishing time spent together. It’s conscientious college students volunteering their time to help bring laughter and a love of reading to the neighborhood. It’s a focal point for the community to gather and to enjoy.

And so the library is truly grateful for the work of Kappa Delta Pi. We are thankful for their partnership and for the joy they spread to the community. Halloween may be the season for scares, but it’s smiles that are handed out when members of Kappa Delta Pi come to the Finksburg Branch.

The Psi Omicron Chapter of Kappa Delta Pi is being honored at KDP’s 50th Biennial Convocation for multiple Chapter Program Awards from 2013-2014 and 2014-2015. They are also one of 25 chapters receiving the Achieving Chapter Excellence (ACE) Award.

Bryan Hissong is the Manager of the Finksburg Branch Library in Carroll County, Maryland.

Meet Rick Heggan, the 2015 KDP/ATE Student Teacher of the Year!

On behalf of Kappa Delta Pi and the Association for Teacher Educators, I am honored to introduce Richard (Rick) Heggan, our 2015 KDP/ATE National Student Teacher/Intern of the Year.

Heggan 2Rick is a 2015 masters of science in education graduate from Rowan University and a member of the KDP Eta Psi Chapter. He currently teaches sixth and eighth grade science at Neeta School in Medford Lakes, New Jersey.

Rick has been described by his student teacher supervisor, Carol Fioresi, as a “natural” in the classroom with a true passion for teaching. Selected from a competitive applicant pool, the selection committee praised his student engagement, energy, and composure and said his project epitomized what they are looking for in an exceptional student teacher.

In sharing the news of this achievement, Rick wrote:

“I am so humbled to receive this prestigious award. I take great pride into representing not only KDP for the next year as National Student Teacher of the Year, but also Folsom Elementary (where I gained a vast amount of teaching experience during my clinical internship 1 & 2) and Rowan University. Without my cooperating teachers and staff at Folsom, adviser and professors from Rowan, and the support of my family and friends, this would never have been accomplished.” 

KDP and ATE congratulate Rick and wish him well as he begins his first school year as a practicing educator. Rick will be honored at Kappa Delta Pi’s 50th Biennial Convocation with a $1500 award and the opportunity to speak at the closing banquet.

If you or someone you know will be student teaching or interning this academic year, I encourage you to learn more about the KDP/ATE National Student Teacher/Intern of the Year Award. Applications are due by June 15, 2016.

Kristen Jackson is Director of Advancement. She will be happy to answer your questions about KDP/ATE National Student Teacher/Intern of the Year, Classroom Teacher Grants, or Scholarships. Email her at Kristen@kdp.org