Miller Team Call-Out Meeting: Thursday, March 22
Miller Elementary is located near downtown Lafayette. There are approximately 420 students enrolled in grades K-4 with a full time faculty of 20 classroom teachers, 3 special education resource teachers, several paraprofessionals, an Instructional Coach, Counselor, ELL teacher, and a Speech and Language Pathologist. Support staff includes an art teacher, music teacher, physical education teacher, library assistant, school nurse, secretary, attendance clerk and custodial staff.
Miller operates a school-wide Title I program, with all students eligible for Title 1 services, which allows for flexible small group approach to reading and/or mathematic intervention. In addition, 84% of students are eligible for free lunch (which means their family income is $15,171 or less) compared to the 40% in Lafayette as a whole. The curriculum at Miller Elementary School is anchored in a program integrating rigorous state standards into the educational experiences of every child. The teachers strive to increase student achievement in all content areas by linking state standards, systematic performance assessments with ongoing data analysis, instructional decision-making based on research-verified best practices, and professional development grounded in the ongoing review of research.
Thomas Miller Elementary School has a number of community partnerships. Trinity UMC strives to be one of these community partners that support the teachers and staff, and through them, the students. Supporting our local elementary school (Trinity is in Miller’s district) is just one way that we seek to grow stronger
relationships with our community.
Pam Delaplane leads this ministry. Our Miller outreach initiative is part of our Ready Set Grow Program, advancing our goal to connect to our community. Over the past year, she has met with the principal to see where we can support the teachers, and has helped coordinate opportunities to support the teachers, and through them, the students and their families.
In 2017 and early 2018, we:
On Thursday, March 22 at 6 pm in the Parlor Conference Room, come to the Miller Ministry Team call-out meeting. The team will be discussing upcoming opportunities to serve Miller and make plans for the spring and summer. Some possible opportunities expressed by the principal include:
As you contemplate your talents, stills, and spiritual gifts, think about how you will contribute them to Trinity in the new year. There are lots of ways to get involved, from volunteering to do odd jobs around the church with our maintenance team to brewing coffee on Sunday mornings.
New Ministry Teams in 2017
Other Ministry Teams
Are you interested in getting involved?
Please contact the church office (742-1288 or firstname.lastname@example.org) and let us know!
The April, 2016 issue of The Messenger included a Ministry Action Plan for Trinity. With an accepted offer on the Education Building and an anticipated closing this spring, now is a good time to evaluate where we are in relation to that plan.
In January of 2014, Rev. Dr. Dan Bonner, a church growth consultant from the Center for Urban Congregational Development, delivered his report with recommendations for Trinity’s future. His consulting process included many conversations (“interviews”) with Trinity’s members and constituents. Through those interviews, Rev. Bonner heard concern from our members regarding the upkeep of our facilities and our financial needs. Also, though impressed with Trinity’s long-time support of Missions, he was concerned that our congregation did not have an effective strategy to build relationships within the neighborhood. Bonner wrote: “we did not observe or hear described any strongly held value or strategy in place for ‘going’ to strengthen your congregation’s ties with your neighbors.” Through the report and dialogue with church leadership, Rev. Bonner recommended exploring ways to utilize our Education Building to address these concerns. He recommended we initiate a partnership with another local ministry partner that could promote community relationships and address the financial burden of the Education Building. That recommendation was the impetus for our conversation and negotiations with Head Start through last spring and summer. However, over time it became apparent that such a partnership would require significant financial commitment from Trinity (financial expenditures to make improvements and modifications to the building required to meet Head Start standards) thereby increasing, rather than decreasing, financial stress. Following up with a couple of additional not-for-profits yielded (although much more quickly) a similar response. Therefore Trustees recommended, and a Church Conference approved, the sale of the Education Building. It seems likely that the sale proceeds could pay off Trinity’s loan and provide much firmer financial footing.
But that does not address the additional concern Dr. Bonner identified; that we need to find effective ways to reach out into our community and build relationships. So, toward that end, a “Dream Team” met last fall to brainstorm some potential initiatives to grow our involvement with our community. At a Community Dream Day, held after worship on Feb. 12, the following ideas were further discussed and developed:
In order for these outreach initiatives to be successful and to truly grow relationships, many volunteers will be needed. Some will need to have specific skills. In other cases, volunteer responsibilities will be easy and simple. We are currently in the process of identifying the volunteer needs, skills and tasks. So watch for more information about this in the future.
COMMUNITY DREAM DAY RESULTS
Thank you to everyone who made the Souper Bowl of Caring a success on Sunday! We raised over $300 for the food pantry!
The missions team was proud to partner with our youth group for the Souper Bowl of Caring. It is a simple and meaningful way to unite communities around important issues, such as hunger, poverty and homelessness. Souper Bowl of Caring empowers young people to lead the movement in their local community, believing that no one is too young to make a difference. This national movement is transforming the weekend of the Big Game into the nation’s largest youth-inspired weekend of giving and serving.
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