Kanke | NAZ Academic Specialist located at PCYC

"At first, all of the scholars were trying to see who I was ...

One scholar was very resistant toward me, and toward a lot of things. Challenging behavior often shows up because the coursework is too difficult and the child tends to act out. It's not that they're a bad kid, but no one has had the time to stop and see what a kid needs.

One day, he brought his football, and I said: 'let's go to the gym' — knowing he was struggling with sight words. So we threw the ball back and for and spelled 'all' — A-L-L. That became our rhythm.

Now, he has a new way to learn. The classroom doesn't always work for everybody; sometimes we have to switch it up. And I really appreciate the opportunity to bring my creativity.

He's able to do both now — work in the gym and in the classroom space. What I'm able to do is build up his confidence in himself and in his reading. And he's doing it!

A lot of the staff a PCYC work in the field of social work, and they use the term 'hire.' And this scholar we're talking about hired me. It's a trust, someone he can trust and go to.

What I walk forward with is that connection with him. He knows we're on it — both of us. It's like 'Hey Ms. Kanke, we haven't met this week' and I'm like 'I'm coming for you; I got you.'

That's my guy. There was a lot of kicking and screaming at the beginning ... but he's the funniest and he's so loving and I wish everyone could see that."

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3 days ago  ·  

Best Practices

Replicable Results Plans

NAZ is lifting up what works with families. Together with our partners, we are leading the development of best practices to support the success of families and children in low-income urban neighborhoods. The resulting blueprints, called NAZ Results Plans, are detailed, evidence-based and peer-reviewed plans, which receive ongoing scrutiny. Results Plans are designed to be replicated with ease by communities throughout the country—thereby multiplying the positive effect exponentially.

Using Data to Drive Results

It’s clear that to reach our audacious goals we must operate in new ways. The NAZ collaborative is leading a movement to shift the culture of service providers toward the use of evidence-based practices and adopt continuous program improvements based on family outcomes. We are data-driven, focused on operating with clear and measurable outcomes for our scholars, their families and programs.

  • Through our shared data tracking system, NAZ Connect, we monitor the progress of each scholar and family to ensure our ongoing support is acting as a catalyst to transform the lives and outcomes for these families.
  • We also use NAZ Connect to monitor the effectiveness of each program— using an internal program review process, which we call “The NAZ Seal of Effectiveness.” This includes a Results Panel comprised of staff from across NAZ partners who are charged with reviewing each of our Results Plans against our results data to identify what’s working and what needs to change.

We make real-time adjustments to ensure we are tracking toward our goals. If the data shows that we are not effective, we will revise our plans until we get it right.