Friday, December 21, 2007

HIPPY Holidays!

Dallas HIPPY Family

Wishing you the very best in 2008! The holidays mark the halfway point of our program year. After a much deserved break we will return (January 7th) to focus on some upcoming projects:

1. HIPPY 20 Year Celebration: February 21 at 6:30 pm, at the Latino Cultural Center. Hold the date and let us know if you can join in the festivities! We are bringing together alumni parents, children, staff, stakeholders and home visitors to celebrate 20 years of HIPPY in Dallas.

2. HIPPY Home Instructor Rally, February 21-22, 2008. This is our annual training event for HIPPY Home Instructors. Each year we provide Home Instructors with both professional and personal development. This year they will receive training on how to maximize their AmeriCorps college education award, and then they will focus on how to develop leadership in parents.

3. Evaluation--we have several evaluation efforts underway this year, begining with our new online MIS (Management Information System) to track family progress. UNT professor Angela Nievar is completing the data gathering on a Timberlawn Foundation funded study comparing HIPPY and non-HIPPY families. Amber Brown will begin data gathering on a study of HIPPY parents who were teenagers when their "HIPPY Child" was born. All this on top of our "regular" evaluation using a parent involvement survey and kindergarten teacher survey!

4. HIPPY*VISTA: 2008 will mark the start up of this exciting project. VISTA members will be placed in various communities (Farmer's Branch/Carrollton; Denton; Fort Worth and one more to be announced soon...) across Texas. These VISTA's will focus on developing a network of stakeholders and funding for parent involvement and school readiness.

That's it for now!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

MIS Online

Where the MIS Magic Happens....
Hector Bojorquez of IDRA and David Tisdale of Texas HIPPY

MIS is the Management Information System, and this year we're fortunate to have entered into a partnership with Intercultural Development Research Association that allows us develop an online MIS for Texas HIPPY. As an online system, the MIS will be more user friendly, provide greater and yet more secure access to data and provide us with the ability to have up to date and real time access to the progress of HIPPY in Texas.

Our online system is being developed as part of the Parent Information Resource Center at IDRA. This move is helping bring HIPPY documentation and data management into the internet. Behind the scenes, a great deal of discussion and information management design had to take place before the heard work of designing an online system could begin. The person tasked with putting the MIS online is Hector Bojorquez of IDRA.

We are so thankful to our partnership with IDRA which will allow us to provide a user friendly program management resource to our HIPPY sites across Texas.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Thankful for Partnerships

HIPPY Partnership with Earning by Learning

At this time of the year we are reminded to give thanks for all the gifts we've been given. Here at Texas HIPPY we've been given so many gifts, not only (but very important) funding, but gifts of talent, energy, time and spirit!

We are particularly thankful this year for new and ongoing funding and would like to thank the Harold Simmons Foundation, the HB and Edna Zale Foundation, the One Star Foundation, the Meadows Foundation, the University of North Texas, the 9 local HIPPY program host agencies, the Intercultural Development Research Association and individual donors who have given to our program. Donations and funding are the resources needed to help us make sure that all children enter school ready to succeed.

Here are some of the other organizations we're thankful for (in alphabetical order):

~ Earning by Learning Dallas, for helping us think creatively and reach more families
~ Half Price Books, for donated new books
~ KERA for donated materials
~ National Council of Jewish Women, in Austin, Dallas, Houston
~ Paciugo, for coupons and donated goodies
~ Texas HIPPY Advisory Council for their support, input and resources
~ Vistas Latino Film Festival for allowing us to partner on a film showing and host a reception
~ VISTA*AmeriCorps for granting us a proposal to focus on expanding HIPPY