News You Can Use
November 12, 2020
Family Engagement is Making Headlines
Cambria Russell
Cambria Russell
Director of MASFEC
Since hybrid and fully-remote schooling became the new normal, family engagement has been making headlines.

We've shared some of of these articles on Twitter @MAFamEngage and have pulled even more stories together into a news post on our website. It's clearer than ever that partnerships between families, schools, and community organizations are fundamental to the success of our children and young people.

In this issue of our newsletter, we offer inspirations and resources that we hope you'll find both useful and inspiring. If you'd like to share your own insights from the field, we would welcome guest posts for our website. I'm especially interested to hear from those working with middle schoolers and teens, about what family engagement looks like in your context.

Please reach out to us at - to share your ideas and help MASFEC build a stronger, more equity-driven culture of family engagement.
Diwali: Bringing Light into the Darkness
Diwali, the November 14 Hindu holiday, celebrates hope and light. Whether you are a practicing Hindu, a parent looking to introduce your child to religious traditions around the world, or an educator building an inclusive learning environment, you may enjoy these hands-on activities recommended to us by author and former teacher Mathangi Subramanian, Ed.D. Read more >
Fall Science
Autumn means falling leaves, hot apple cider – and lots of opportunities for preschool science! Young children are natural scientists, asking endless questions, conducting countless experiments, and making innumerable observations. Check out our quick and easy activities capitalize on children’s natural inquisitiveness On our website >
An Indigenous Reading List for Thanksgiving
At Thanksgiving time, all over the country, children in the early grades will learn the story of the Mayflower. Unfortunately, the most common version of this tale privileges the views and contributions of White Pilgrims and erases the experiences of the original inhabitants of our land. More information about We Are Grateful (pictured) and other recommendations can be found here >
Seasonal Activities and Read Alouds
for Children and their Families
Our December Family Literacy Clendar offers cozy read alouds and holiday-themed activities. We hope you will share our December calendar with families in your network, and if you haven't seen November's calendar, the link is also below. Enjoy!

Restorative Practices for Families and Professionals
Mindful Mondays: Andrea Parker leads a restorative mindfulness session every Monday - 10-15 minutes per week, "just for you."

  • Educators: Register now for weekly, live, virtual mindfulness sessions aimed at educators
  • Anyone can benefit from the 12-minute recording from our first session. Take a deep breath, then click play

Focus Fridays: Every third Friday, Andrea streams a meditative session via Facebook Live from the Federation for Children with Special Needs Facebook Page. Her next session will air on November 13, but you can watch the recording from October 23rd here >
MASFEC Groups for Families
MASFEC partners with a number of community organizations to offer supportive discussion groups for families. We directly facilitate two online parent/caregiver groups – one in English and one in Spanish. Our last session of the year takes plac December 3 at 5pm.

Helping Families Understand School and District Report Cards
The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) publishes School & District Report Cards to provide families with transparent information about how students are doing in their school district or school. Navigating these reports and their website can be a bit intimidating at first, so we have produced these two video orientations:
Bring the Positive Solutions for Families Program to Your School or Agency
We are excited to provide multiple sessions of this 10 hour virtual train-the-trainer course for educators. Upon completion, you will be ready to launch a Positive Solutions for Families program in your school or child care center.

Help Spread the Word!
If you like the ideas shared in this newsletter, please:

Forward this email to a friend!

Follow us on Twitter @MAFamEngage

Write to us with YOUR ideas for future issues, at

Massachusetts Statewide Family Engagement Center
A program of the Federation for Children with Special Needs
529 Main Street, Suite 1M3 | Boston, MA 02129
617.236.7210 |