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Dept of Counseling, Leadership, Adult Education & School Psychology
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San Marcos, Texas 78666

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2013 Education and Community Leadership Conference

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2012 Conference Program

Conference Schedule and Presentation Information

(Subject to change)

8:00 AM - 9:00 AM - 9:15 AM - 10:45 AM - 12:00 PM - 1:15 PM - 2:45 PM

8:00 AM - 9:00 AM
Check in, registration and breakfast
3rd Floor, LBJ Student Center Ballroom
9:00 AM - 9:15 AM
Opening Remarks
Dr. Miguel Guajardo
Chair, ECLC Planning Committee
Dr. Linda Homeyer
Chair, Department of Counseling, Leadership, Adult Education, and School Psychology
Dr. Patrice Werner
Chair, Department of Curriculum and Instruction
9:15 AM - 10:30 AM
Keynote Presentation
Dr. Maenette K.P. Ah nee-Benham
Dean, Hawai‘inuiākea School of Hawaiian Knowledge, University of Hawai’i-Manoa
10:45 AM - 12:00 PM
Concurrent Sessions (1)
Cultivating Adult and Youth Partnerships to re-imagine Teaching and Learning
Mark Cantu, Jaqueline Garcia, Tatiana Garcia, Meghan House, Faith Pope
This session shares the work of students and faculty at Waelder Independent School District.  The presenters will tell their story about the process they have engaged in while organizing the creation of a youth center.  They will also address their efforts to develop a curriculum that focuses on community development, leadership, and youth engagement beyond the traditional classroom.  Grounded in the work of Myles Horton, Paulo Freire, and the Llano Grande Center, these processes create opportunities for the stakeholders involved to re-create current pedagogical practices and encourage equitable relationships.
Meaningful Forms of Parental Involvement: The Case of Two Local Public Schools
Clarena Larrotta, Norma Mercado
Parental involvement should be meaningful to all and should be designed with diverse families in mind. This way all parents would be able to volunteer and employ their strengths and funds of knowledge. Meaningful parental involvement might boost social capital by providing parents with insider information about the school and about larger educational processes (Domina, 2005; Larrotta & Yamamura, 2011; McNeal, 1999).
Presenters will share their experiences creating spaces and offering educational opportunities for parents and families (e.g., parents’ room, workshop on college-going culture, family literacy practices) as meaningful forms of parental involvement. Rooted in the principles of engaged scholarship (Boyer, 1996) and action research (Reason & Bradbury, 2001), these projects have been implemented locally at an elementary and a middle school. Presenters will address challenges and lessons learned. Conference participants will discuss ideas on meaningful forms of parental involvement that can be implemented at their schools.
Equitable Leadership for LGBT Youth and Families in K-12 Schools
Michael P. O’Malley
This session addresses evidence-based implications for equitable leadership practice for LGBT youth and families in K-12 schools. Following a brief overview of national data indicating what is known about the experiences of LGBT youth in public schools, we will discuss asset based strategies for creating safe and welcoming schools through student organizations, curriculum development, school policy, and professional development. Practical tools for assessing your campus climate will also be introduced, and there will be opportunity to discuss particular issues and challenges that exist on your local campus.
Breaking the Fall on Deaf Ears
Ken Breslow
Helen Keller remarked, “The problems of deafness are deeper and more complex, if not more important than … blindness …” In summary, deafness cuts one off from people; blindness cuts one off from things. Participants in this interactive workshop will learn about the different models of deafness, how the theoretical models apply to communities, and how leadership behaviors are contingent upon one’s worldview of deafness from the inside out (… or is that the outside in?).
From “Me” to “We”: Reintroducing Hip-Hop Culture for Education and Community Change
Raphael Travis
Hip-Hop culture was born of environments that were oppressive yet teeming with innovation. Pioneers of Hip-Hop culture were empowered by creatively expressing their concerns and ideas. These cultural innovators gained strength through their identification with and connection to others in similar circumstances. The same connections persist today. At their strongest, the voices of rap music are individually empowering, but they can also be collectively empowering, and even instigate collective action to address issues that put individuals at risk. Educational and therapeutic uses of rap music seek to harness this strength to improve individual and community well-being. The thriving individual is poised to be a meaningful contributor to positive community change.
Thus, the desirable and measured outcomes of educational or therapeutic efforts should be similarly strengths-based and capture the quality of the relationships between individuals and their environment. To move research and practice forward, efforts to use rap music within the change process must include clearly measured concepts and models. Concepts and models must more precisely tell us about the nature of strengths and of person – environment relationships over time. Ultimately, these indicators will help inform new educational goals, objectives and strategies for evaluation.
Breakout Session with Dr. Maenette Benham
Following keynote and book signing, Dr. Benham will continue the conversation from her keynote presentation.
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Lunchtime welcome by:
Dr. D. Stan Carpenter
Dean, College of Education
Lunch (provided)
1:15 PM - 2:30 PM
Concurrent Sessions (2)
Helping students achieve the American DREAM: A critical conversation about DREAMers and their families
Melissa Martinez, Leticia Grimaldo
In light of continued xenophobic sentiments nationwide, the passing of the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act remains a contested issue. This bipartisan legislation would assist undocumented students who have lived and attended school in the U.S. for most of their lives in obtaining a postsecondary education and would provide them a path to citizenship, under certain provisions. In this session, the latest issues regarding the DREAM act and how it affects undocumented students and their families will be discussed. Audience members will be expected to contribute to this conversation by sharing their own experiences and manner in working with undocumented students who are interested in pursuing a higher education (DREAMers).
Closing the Achievement Gap: Prevention vs. Intervention
Pat Guerra, Denisse Baldwin, Bonnie Davenport, and Darrell Emanuel
Each spring schools gear up to prepare students for taking the state accountability test with interventions like Saturday school, pull out programs, tutorials, and test-taking skills but do these interventions produce lasting change in student learning and achievement? Given the fact that an achievement gap continues to persist in most schools, and schools continue to implement these same interventions year after year with minimal results, it appears this may not be the case.
This session presents the efforts of three educators using action research to discover the problem for underachievement of culturally, linguistically, and economically diverse students (CLED) at their respective schools. Using an equity lens to collect and analyze data they discovered the problem does not lie within CLED students, as many of their teachers believe, but in instruction that fails to meet students’ educational needs. Thus revealing efforts should be placed in prevention, not intervention. Working with teachers, these three educators have begun the work of examining Tier I instruction with the ultimate goal of transforming current practice into culturally responsive/relevant instruction. They will share findings, data collection tools, and successes and roadblocks experienced thus far in their work, along with next steps and reservations. Additionally, they will see advice from participants implementing a preventive approach in their own school.
UTPA Brazero Oral History Project
Francisco Guajardo, Samuel Garcia, Alenn Garza, Jocabed Garcia
Due to the increasing demand for labor during World War II, the United States and Mexico enacted the Bracero Program in 1942.   Under this program, Mexican laborers were contracted to work on U.S. farmlands, primarily along the U.S.-Mexican border. The Rio Grande Valley was home to many of these Bracero laborers and will be the area of focus. This study will incorporate the Indigenous knowledge model to argue that community based leadership can emerge through the study and knowledge production process of listening to the stories of community elders.  The principal individuals in this study are community elders that participated in the Bracero Program. Effective use of oral history and ethnographic research will follow the methodology. This presentation is based on an oral history project conducted by an eclectic team of researchers that includes university professors, public school teachers, undergraduate and graduate students and community elders.
Mexican Media Stereotypes: The Reproduction of Racist Discourses
Octavio Pimentel
Latinas/os are the fastest-growing minority in the U.S., totaling 15 percent of the total population; by 2050, Latinas/os are expected to account for a quarter of this country’s population (Sanchez, 2009). Yet, despite the significant contributions offered to the U.S. by Latinas/os in widely varied industries, advertising agencies have been historically quick to limit the portrayal of Latinas/os to stereotypical and, at times, overtly racist roles. By applying Critical Discourse Analysis, this essay confronts these stereotypical depictions of Latinas/os in mainstream television commercials, focusing on two recent El Paso commercials and one Burger King commercial, and discusses the resulting racist implications of them. The analysis shows that racist images of Latinas/os in mainstream television commercials still exist. Through the manipulative rhetoric of framing, presupposition, metaphor, topicalization, genre, and more (Huckin, 1995), Latinas/os are degraded and marginalized. In this analysis, the presenter finds several essentialized images of Latinos: Latinos speak with thick accents; are confounded by simple and silly dilemmas; and are short, fat, costumed wrestlers who would take to battle for their tacos.
Theology Education: Issues of Spaces for Learning, Pedagogy of Forgiveness and Hip Hop Spirituality
Alexis Maston, Karen Maxfield-Lunkin
 In recent years, the religious and spirituality spectrum of the United States has tremendously shifted with a growing diverse sets of people, faiths, and tradition ( Purpel & McLaurin, 2004; Whitterspoon & Mitchell, 2009). “If America’s students are to become truly educated, fully engaged citizens of our multicultural democracy, they need to understand this rich religious …[and spiritual] diversity” (Sorrett, 2012, p.1). Inspired by a course given last fall in the College of Education at Texas State University, titled Theological Issues in Education. This session looks at just two perspectives within this context, displaying how these educators navigate the spaces between education and spirituality. The first speaker will speak from her experiences as an assistant principle and her pedagogy of forgiveness. The second speaker will speak about her experiences as an community educator with Hip Hop spirituality. In hopes to add to the conversations surrounding race, religion, community and education.
2:30 PM - 2:45 PM
2:45 PM - 4:00 PM
Concurrent Sessions (3)
Three Campus Leaders Turning to One Another: A Dialogical Approach to Community-Building
Enrique García, Patricia Rocha, Lisa Ashcroft
This session is a conversation with three elementary school leaders who have used conversation as a way to build community between and among themselves in their daily practice of campus leadership. This dialogical approach to campus leadership began almost three years ago when the three met leaders first met during the interview process for the position of instructional administrator at their campus. In the role of principal and assistant principal, respectively, Ms. Rocha and Ms. Ashcroft engaged Mr. Garcia in what was to be the first of several conversations that become and integral part of building and maintaining a culture of community within their leadership team. Grounded on the work of Miguel and Francisco Guajardo, Paulo Freire, Peter Block, and Margaret Wheatley, the three campus leaders are now working to collaboratively develop a culture of conversation with their colleagues as part of the community building process on their campus. 
Graduate Programs in Educational Leadership
Michael P. O’Malley, Sarah Nelson
Presentation on the graduate programs in educational leadership at Texas State University.
Policy as Practice: Personal Development, Surveillance, and Agency
Monica Valadez, Karon Henderson
This interactive session will explore the developmental process of educators who become political agents through/within the educational process. This educational process includes critical reflection on the self, exposure to literature, critical conversations and engagement in low-level surveillance of the political process at both the micro and macro levels (Ritzer, 1996; Guajardo & Guajardo, 2004).  Presenters will elaborate on pivotal pedagogical moments that informed their own development throughout the process and reflect on the tension created as they occupied this ruptured space of dissidence. Through digital story, art, and personal narrative, presenters will explore the disruption to their assumptions, the naming and validating of their intuitive successful practices and (in)congruencies between their daily work and their emerging political selves (Sutton, Levinson & Cade, 2001)
Educating in the dreamtime: The intersections of indigenous instruction and the digital world
Lee Francis IV, Kapena Shim
This presentation is a collaboration between presenters from Texas State and Hawai’I in which they will share and discuss the role of technology and indigenous instruction and learning methods, specifically how the digital age is bringing people closer to an ancient time of traditional ways of learning and knowing.
Engaging, Exploring, Connecting: A Collective Approach to Authentic Change through High School Youth Empowerment
Denisha Presley, Michelle Darling, SMHS Student Panel
This session explores the work and the journey of students and staff as San Marcos High School has successfully transitioned from a traditional high school to a wall-to-wall academy structure. Changing the infrastructure is administrative and fared well with the support of the community and the school board. Here, you will experience the celebrations and challenges as this 5-A high school developed a mental model that exorcised a critical consciousness in staff members in a way that deepens service to students.
The intersection of policy and practice in Dual Language programs
Marie Mendoza, Minda Lopez
Dual Language programs are growing across the state and nation. 
Many districts are interested in starting, growing, and sustaining their Dual Language programs, but may not have considered recent policies and how these policies impact practice.  

In this interactive session, presenters will share state policies and Local Education Agency regulations, recent research, and practice on Dual Language schools. Additionally, presenters will share their experiences in long term planning for dual language program expansion, implementing, monitoring and sustaining Dual Language programs as teachers, administrators, and parents. Presenters will address challenges and lessons learned as well as imagine the possibilities for the future. Conference participants will actively engage in discussing and exploring these many different facets of Dual Language education along with the presenters.