While political divisions more and more often resemble chasms, one issue seems to be transcending right and left, red and blue: the importance of universal pre-K for 4-year-olds. More »
Celebrate mom and bring the family to Lumin Education for an afternoon of fun and excitement. More »
The new Learning Lab building at the Lindsley Park campus is complete and services are now beginning in special education, dyslexia and reading and math interventions. “The students feel really special having their More »
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While political divisions more and more often resemble chasms, one issue seems to be transcending right and left, red and blue: the importance of universal pre-K for 4-year-olds.
President Barack Obama cited it in his State of the Union address. New York City has just received $300 million from the state for programs throughout the city. Conservative states like Arkansas and my home state of Texas have set up programs regarded as models for the nation.
But an important fact is lost in this laudable push: Without proper preparation, pre-K is too late.
The issue is this: Neural pathways are laid from the moment of birth and throughout a child’s earliest years. If a child doesn’t receive sufficient affection, language stimulation, attuned responses and more from birth to age 4, she or he will arrive at pre-K with deficits that can never be entirely eliminated. Though it’s shocking to consider, these children truly have been brain-damaged in a subtle way.
In my early childhood program, I have met children who have been talked with and played with so little that they know fewer than 10 words at age 3. Yet these are loved and cared-for children. Their parents simply didn’t have the vital information they needed about child-rearing and brain development.
The program I help lead in Texas, Lumin Bachman Lake Community School, works to address this problem. Our teachers go to the homes of families, primarily Hispanic immigrants, with children ranging from infants to age 5. We treat parents as the students who need early intervention and education.
Our teachers visit once a week with parents and children and get right down to it: We interact with the children and teach their parents just how crucial it is that babies be played with, talked to and allowed to explore. We also talk about the importance of health issues like regular immunizations. We find the parents are hungry for this information — like all of us, they want the best for their children.
It’s a joy to see parents begin to talk and dance with their children, to read to them regularly and to understand why they must.
The families of low-income new immigrants are particularly hampered by a number of factors: distance from extended family, language divisions, low wages and educational ranges among the parents. That makes it all the more vital that they learn how to set their children up for success.
These families may be starting out at a considerable disadvantage, but they are raising the voters, workers, citizens and taxpayers of our future. Not only will laying a strong groundwork benefit the children and families involved, it will ultimately help us all in making them better citizens. A recent study in Science magazine indicates that not only will these children have acquired the cognitive strengths that proper stimulation provides but they will be physically healthier as adults. There is no downside to giving children what they so desperately need.
The White House’s $69 billion education budget calls for preschool system for all 4-year-olds. Some of that funding should be directed to continuing and replicating programs such as ours and the Too Small to Fail program in Providence, R.I. The Providence program also involves teachers going into homes and training parents, but it also includes the use of a device, called a TK, to monitor how much a child is spoken to and then using that data to encourage parents to keep up their efforts toward new behaviors.
Yes, approaches such as these carry considerable initial costs, but the savings, in school readiness, life outcomes and dollars spent on those who’ve lost their way far outweigh the costs. If we care about the future, we have to care not only about the 4-year- olds in pre-K but about the parenting they receive long before they walk through the door of the school.
Celebrate mom and bring the family to Lumin Education for an afternoon of fun and excitement. There will be food, prizes, a bounce house, face painting… and it’s all free.
The event will be held at Lumin Education’s East Dallas campus, on the southeast corner of Wayne St. and Gurley Ave.
In case you haven’t heard the exciting news about East Dallas Community Schools … Our new name is now Lumin Education!
For 36 years, we’ve provided a life-changing education to children from diverse cultures in low-income neighborhoods of Dallas. And we will continue to so. The only major change is our name and logo. We’ve changed the name for the following reasons:
- Expansion — Ever since we expanded outside of the East Dallas area, we’ve been searching for a more suitable name. Now we’re planning for additional expansion and our current name would have been even more confusing.
- Identity — Our current three campuses all have “Community School” in their names, but people don’t realize these schools are part of the same organization. The name Lumin Education readily links all our campuses together. It will help parents and friends across the city realize that these schools represent a single, highly successful, educational program that changes children’s lives forever.
- Meaning — The Latin word Lumen means “light.” We modified the spelling to associate it with “illuminate.” We intend to feature and build on that image. The term Lumin Education embodies our philosophy that all children possess within them a light, enabling and encouraging them to explore the world around them. Our job as educators is to create opportunities for the child to tap into that natural curiosity. For us, Lumin isn’t just a name. It’s an ideal always in our mind – and we want to convey that ideal vividly to our students and their parents and our communities.
LUMIN symbolizes the LIGHT in a child’s eyes when that child discovers something new, or after a major struggle, masters a challenging task!
We are currently using the new logo below. The “i” in Lumin represents a child with the unique glow of gifts and talents that he or she brings to the world.
Lumin Education has replaced the name East Dallas Community Schools as well as our other umbrella name Neighbors United for Quality Education. As far as our campus names, we have added the word “Lumin” in front of each of them. The following are the new logos and full names for each school:
On February 14th, we launched our new website at LuminEducation.org. Staff emails now match this new website but all other contact information (office address and phone numbers) is the same.
Our tax identification number (75-1610254) remains the same, but we request that future contributions be made to Lumin Education.
Our new name is a big change, but rest assured that we are still the same organization, with the same values and the same educational quality. Nothing about us is changing but our name.
Primary (3-6 yr old) Montessori Teacher, 2014-2015 school year
Requirements: Montessori certification, bachelor’s degree, legal work status in the U.S., a passion for teaching, and the temperament to engage children with a wide range of learning styles, and from diverse home backgrounds.
Compensation: competitive salary; health insurance; life insurance; state retirement system and (after two years) private retirement account (TIAA-CREF)
Contact: Tom.Loew@nullLuminEducation.org 214-321-9155 x 101