Check & Connect Introduces Online Training, Online Student Engagement, and Hosts Conference this Summer

Sun May 12 2019
Eileen Klemm.

ICI’s Check & Connect launches the online version of its Preparation and Implementation training in early June and hosts its biennial Student Engagement Conference on campus in late July. “We are so excited to be expanding the reach of Check & Connect to more students across the country and around the world through our online training option for leadership teams. Our first online training is almost full and includes leaders from four different states and an island in the South Pacific. We are also thrilled to bring together presenters from across the country, as well South Africa and Chile, to share their expertise on student engagement at our conference this summer,” says Check & Connect’s director Eileen Klemm (pictured speaking at the 2017 conference).

Developed at ICI in the 1990s, Check & Connect is an intervention used with K–12 students who show warning signs of disengagement with school and who are at risk of dropping out. At the core of Check & Connect is a trusting relationship between the student and a caring, trained mentor who both advocates for and challenges the student to keep education salient. Students are referred to Check & Connect when they show warning signs of disengaging from school, such as poor attendance, behavioral issues, or low grades. Of the dropout prevention interventions reviewed by the U.S. Department of Education’s What Works Clearinghouse, Check & Connect is the only program found to have strong evidence of positive effects on staying in school.

Designed for Check & Connect coordinators and site leaders, the LIVE! Online Preparation & Implementation Training will provide the Check & Connect framework and planning steps for implementing with fidelity. This option is well-suited to sites that are exploring or preparing to implement Check & Connect, implementing Check & Connect and seeking formal training, onboarding new team members, and training smaller leadership teams and those unable to attend in person. The online trainings begin June 4 and 6 and continue through the summer, with more offerings planned for the fall.

Check & Connect is moving another offering online: the Student Engagement Instrument. Engage SEI, which replaces the old pencil-and-paper version, is a validated student self-report survey designed to measure cognitive and affective engagement—how students think and feel about school. The online platform allows schools to easily and efficiently gather data on internal factors of student engagement, enabling staff to tailor supports to student needs.

And on July 24–25, Check & Connect hosts the 2019 Student Engagement Conference: Solutions for Success at the McNamara Alumni Center on the University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus. Participants will learn about student engagement as it relates to multi-tiered supports, outcomes, the classroom, the community, and multiculturalism. The keynote speakers are educator/researcher Kent Pekel and educational consultant/principal Kelvin Oliver. Registration is open.