NAZ Family Academy Goes Online

As stay-at-home orders continue to impact the world, North Minneapolis families are finding connection and education at a distance through Family Academy Online. Before the stay-at-home order, NAZ Family Academy participants would gather at NAZ offices and partner sites to discuss empowerment, scholar success, and navigating relationships with teachers and schools. The popular program has graduated over 500 families since its inception. Today, NAZ parents are able to interact virtually as the curriculum is led through video chat by Family Academy Facilitators. 

This week marks the first cohort of NAZ parents participating in the online offerings. Family Academy Facilitator,  Vince Frazier states, “I’m glad that NAZ as a whole is providing a way for families to stay connected. That’s the biggest value we offer, the conduit for families to receive the information. If I can tell it in a story, I’ve noticed in the classes wrapping up the winter session, and the classes we had (online), parents and families are thankful to be talking about things that are preserving their lives…the adult interactions. Parents know we’re still there, we still care.” 

Pivoting to an online platform has become quickly popular, enrolling over 60 families in a few weeks. Parents exploring personal empowerment, relationship management, and goal setting can choose a Foundations class, held twice a week. Parents learning about their elementary-age scholar’s success in school, brain development, and social success enroll in College-Bound Scholars, also held twice a week. 

Early childhood education has also migrated online to a discussion-based online format called Chat | Live. The NAZ class instructor, Andre Dukes, Senior Director of Collaborative Impact: Early Childhood, “We are off to an exciting start with the Family Academy Virtual Chat times. Families appreciate having an opportunity to connect with adults and they are grateful that NAZ has provided this platform. We are all learning together how to continue building community.”

NAZ is adjusting to the needs of North Minneapolis scholars and families by meeting them where they are and supporting their dreams.