Isabel Meaker, executive director of family engagement, in front of poster of La Promesa de Bellingham

The Whatcom Literacy Council (WLC) recognized Isabel Meaker, executive director of family engagement, with the “Friend of Literacy” award on Friday, Nov. 5 during their annual Breakfast with Nancy Pearl event.

This award represents someone who has helped their organization in a significant way.

Meaker works with the literacy council supporting the diverse needs of hundreds of district parents. She collaborates with the council by connecting parents with important services. One of these services has been a basic computer skills class for parents who speak English as a second language. The eight-week computer class covers everything from how to perform simple functions on a laptop and how to set up an email account to producing final presentations using Microsoft’s PowerPoint program. Additionally, she helps locate refurbished laptops that the council is then able to offer to parents who complete the class. She is a “friend of literacy” because it is widely understood that if parents are actively engaged in their own learning and in their children’s learning, the children do better both academically and socially. The WLC award puts a spotlight on this important family engagement work.

In her acceptance of the award during the virtual event, Meaker wanted to share the award with colleagues in the district and with community partners who have supported her department and the families in Bellingham Public Schools.

“I am receiving this award, but it’s a team that puts this together, starting with the Whatcom Literacy Council.” Meaker said in her remarks. “There is no way that we can do this for our parents and for our community without you.”

“This is a collaboration with the literacy council, the educational technology department, the family engagement department, as well as the BEATS program at Shuksan that helps with the child care. It’s a whole village to make it happen,” she continued.

“I want to thank the literacy council for all the support that we receive in the district, for believing in our parents, and for being partners in creating a better future for our kids, our parents and our community.”

The 2021 Breakfast with Nancy Pearl event is available online.


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