October 2018 – PAT Meeting #4

October 5, 2018, 1-3pm


UB backbone staff present: David Harrington, Nysheva-Starr, Kassa Belay, Dionne Grayman, Jason Ludwig

Attendees: 25, including 2 FAB members and representatives from 13 organizations and 18 programs.




  • Revisit group norms and agreements
  • Clarify UB Goals, PAT goals, individual member goals (and see where they might align)
  • Clarify DTB proposal goals, and follow up on and identify next steps


  • Icebreaker: Introduce yourself (name, position) and respond to the following prompt: How can United For Brownsville be helpful to you in reaching professional goals for yourself or your organization? Be selfish. As you listen to others, write down the common themes you hear
  • Members mostly expressed the desire to network, collaborate and share resources with other organizations
  • Some members also mentioned their desire to enhance the community that they work and/or live in

Norms and Agreements                                                                        

  • Discussion of norms and agreements necessary for addressing issues; setting tone; signaling appropriate ways to provide feedback; promoting awareness; resolving conflict;  creating a safe, brave, liberated space
    • Reviewed norms agreed upon in PAT meeting # 2 and added missing values, which are in bold below.


Taking moments to breathe

Listening +

Active Listening

Informed +

Patience +



Generosity of spirit

Trust +






Communication +




Culturally/socially appropriate terminology

Cultural competence


Validation of multiple perspectives

Belief in validity of community voice



Openness ++




Commitment +

Passion for work

Being invested





Remembering to center joy

News and Updates                                                                        

  • Recap of previous meeting
    • Achieved a better understanding of early childhood landscape in Brownsville
    • Followed up on and identified next steps for the DTB proposal by creating 6 month timelines
  • Recap of other meetings in September
    • FAB Meeting #5
      • Decided that Brownsville NTA will define neighborhood
      • Contributed to 6 month timelines
      • Visits from Scholastic and Too Small to Fail
    • Leadership Council Meeting # 4
      • Broke into 4 subcommittees: one for each DTB projects and an Evaluation Advisory Team
      • Elicited commitments from members
    • Mentioned that UB is a connective infrastructure, so PAT members may share job opportunities at their organizations as well
  • Shared results of last PAT evaluation in summary and graph forms
    • Average scores for September’s meeting were very consistent with Survey # 2
    • Scores were on average 14% higher than those in Survey #1
  • Requests from last meeting
    • Clarify the goals for the whole group
    • Address how families flow through services
    • Have more FAB members in attendance
    • Having a digital space to share info, resources, feedback between meetings
    • Handouts emailed prior to meetings
      • PAT Members mentioned that they were still unable to access handouts for this meeting

UB and PAT goals                                                                    

  • Recap of goals of UB
    • Improving SEL/LD outcomes for 0-3 year olds in Brownsville
    • Building a sustainable community infrastructure for collaboration
  • PAT-specific goal:
    • Collaborate with organizations aligned with UB’s mission to share resources and co-create projects that benefit Brownsville and its families in a sustainable way.
      • Agreed upon norms and values that should be permanently present in our collective work.
      • Disrupt inequalities and systemic racism in  our own work.
    • An example of disrupting equities: UB and PAT’s emphasis on building local practices equates to a value statement–we trust the people in Brownsville to tell us what works for the community. 

Breakout Groups

  • The PAT split into three breakout groups based on their interests in the sections of the DTB proposal:
    • Learning Landscapes: in HUB space (NS & JL)
    • Family Co-Op: 4th Floor Conference Room (KB)
    • Books for Brownsville: 4th Floor desks, large room to the left of the elevator (DH & DG)
  • Group assignment:
    • Identify 2-3 clear goals that you think your project is designed to reach
      • For each goal, answer the following:
        • How does this project help reach the goal?
        • Is this goal achievable?
        • How does it align with UB/PAT/individual goals
    • Revisit your group’s 6-month timeline:
      • What has been achieved so far?
      • What needs to be followed up on next?
      • What needs to be added, subtracted, changed or moved?
      • Assign tasks for the next month.


Learning Landscape/Language Kits Breakout Group

Discussion Notes:

  • Learning Landscapes Updates:
    • Too Small to Fail
      • Offering Technical Assistance for UB’s Learning Landscapes project
      • Has an in depth overview of Learning Landscapes strategies in their Talking is Teaching Community Campaign Guide
        • Suggests a “de-accelerated” 6-8 month timeline for UB’s Learning landscapes project
        • Involves more robust approach that includes Trusted Messengers and High Quality Tools along with environmental prompts (signage)
  • Discussed becoming a “Talking is Teaching” Community
    • Subcommittee members were receptive of synergizing the work of the Books for Brownsville and Learning Landscape subcommittees with the goal of eventually becoming a Talking is Teaching Community. However, some members were uncomfortable with installing signage in grocery stores without first piloting the materials in the Greg Jackson Center, Morris Koppelman Center, or similar sites already accessible to PAT members, in order to develop a sustainable methodology before expanding to grocery stores.

Books for Brownsville

Discussion Notes:

The majority of participants in Books for Brownsville were attending their first PAT meeting and needed to be introduced to the PAT, Discover Together Brownsville, and the purpose of Books for Brownsville. Moreover the project description was adjusted to match input from the PAT/FAB during previous meetings. Therefore, most of the breakout discussion was spent catching new members up.

Project Summary

Books for Brownsville has changed considerably based on feedback from providers and families. Because many of the participants at the 10/5 meeting were first-time attendees, much of the meeting was spent summarizing the project and its history to date, learning about new attendees’ interest in it, and taking into account new feedback, questions, and concerns from the group.

The PAT and the FAB subcommittees are now developing a literacy training series and community of practice around literacy that are uniquely responsive to Brownsville residents’ experiences and strengths. In short, this group is an opportunity to disrupt literacy and family engagement practices that are concerned with identifying deficits rather than achieving equity.

Who served: Brownsville-based service providers and local parents/caregivers of children aged 0-3

Where: health clinics, doctor’s offices, childcare sites, early childhood mental health services, preventive services, shelters, religious institutions, etc.

What: Inspired by the practices of Reach Out and Read and other literacy education groups, UB will convene local residents and early childhood professionals to: better understand families’ definitions of and practices around pre-literacy; surface the strategies that service providers can follow to best support families’ methods of encouraging young children’s literacy development; and create strength-based, culturally-informed trainings for families and service providers. Service providers who participate in the trainings will put the curriculum developed by Books for Brownsville into practice along with books, literacy materials, and other resources to be distributed to the families they serve. The convenings that initially develop the training and guidance on pre-literacy will form the basis for a community of practice that will continue beyond the planning and curriculum development stages. Books for Brownsville will identify appropriate leaders, conveners, and partners to lead the work of Books for Brownsville via regular coordination meetings, thereby institutionalizing opportunities to enhance connectivity and strengthen relationships between and among local residents and providers.

Project Participants

UB is inspired by the individuals from the FAB and the PAT who are leading this project in the right direction. The PAT Books for Brownsville subcommittee had a number of new participants to enrich the conversation, and we’re excited to have them aboard: Akila King from Room to Grow, Renee Muir from BMS, Francine Cutler from BMS, Lisvet Luceno from Caribbean Women’s Health Association, and Lucy Pigliacelli from CAMBA.

Moreover, there were several subcommittee members who were not able to attend, among them the following members who have taken the lead on some next steps and action items.

Next Steps – Next steps were emailed out following the meeting, and a follow-up joint FAB/PAT Books for Brownsville call-in meeting was scheduled for 10/18/18.

  1. Please review the project details below and the attached timeline.
  2. Before the end of day on 10/16, reply to this email with answers to any of the following that interest you. UB can then work through any follow ups you need from us before the November meeting.
    • UB is currently drafting a budget for this project focused on convening the roundtable and hiring a consultant to develop a curriculum, develop training materials, and lead the training. We are likely to contribute some of our program activities budget to this as well as seek external funding. That said, if you were going to develop this project without constraints, what would it look like?
    • What other organizations/individuals need to be invited into this conversation and to the roundtable? Can you make an introduction for us?
    • Any questions that UB staff or other members need to answer about the project before we move on
    • Any role that you see for yourself to lead or assist with steps
    • Any timeline items that need to be added or adjusted

Family Co-Op Breakout Group       

Discussion Notes:

  1. PAT-wide Goals: The PAT reflected on UB’s overarching goals and each member’s specific professional goals and then crafted some “PAT Wide Goals” that characterizes what PAT efforts should ultimately be working towards throughout the life of our collaborative efforts. They are bolded below
    • PAT members will disrupt inequities and systemic racism, starting with our own work
    • PAT members will collaborate with organizations/programs aligned with UB’s mission in order to share resources (e.g. Professional Development training) and co-create projects that benefit the Brownsville community and its families in a sustainable way
    • The PAT’s agreed upon “Values for Collaboration” should be permanently present in our collective work
  2. The Family Co-Op group then generated a series of reflections on how the Family Co-Op concept aligns with the above stated PAT Wide Goals
    • The Family Co-Op flattens traditional power dynamics, helping to disrupt inequities and systemic racism, by
      • Positioning parents/caregivers to co-create the Family Co-Op, which ensures the model reflects Brownsville residents’ lived experiences and local resources
      • Positioning parents/caregivers to provide support and guidance to one another, rather than only relying on professional service providers
      • Centering “Pride in Place” themes, exhibited in the field trip component of the Family Co-Op, which generates a sense of cultural and racial pride for local residents
    • Because the Family Co-Op is also being developed by PAT members it also aligns with the 2nd PAT goal regarding collaboration to co-create projects that benefit the Brownsville community and its families in a sustainable way.

Next Steps

  1. In our 6 month timeline we identified 3 next steps to begin on 10/5/18
    • Review Brownsville early childhood development asset maps (from CCC) in order to propose potential locations for the pilot Family Co-Op site(s)
      • This map is attached above. Please open in Adobe Acrobat, which will allow you to hide and show layers- don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions. We’d like to use this map to think about where it makes sense to locate the Family Co-Op in two initial sites. SCO’s Morris Koppelman early childhood center (774 Saratoga Ave) and Community Solutions’s\ Greg Jackson Center (519 Rockaway Ave) have both expressed interest in hosting sites. After reviewing the map, do you agree these sites are a good fit?
    • PAT/FAB Review Family Co-Op curriculum from Scholastic’s Grundy County, Tn project to prepare Family Co-Op PAT/FAB breakout group members to make adjustment suggestions in service of a more culturally compatible curriculum for a Brownsville Family Co-Op
      • Please see the attached sample Family Co-Op curriculum and review at your convenience, but please come prepared to discuss feedback in the November PAT/FAB meetings. I’m happy to receive any written feedback individually, or you can share with the whole breakout group…
    • Identify In-Kind contributions from Scholastic partners
      • Scholastic has agreed provide various types of in kind support for the following areas:
        • Curriculum development; Books/Materials; Budgeting development; Evaluation efforts; Technical Assistance; Grant Writing

Survey Results

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