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One East-Funded Elementary Intervention Paraeducator Program Making Huge Difference for Families

When Breton Downs mom Morgan Evans was diagnosed with cancer several years ago, one of the life decisions she made was to spend more time with her kids by homeschooling them. A former elementary school teacher herself, Evans was “doing pretty well” educating all four of her school age kids, despite caring for her toddler at the same time.

“Then COVID hit,” Evans says.

The Evans kids started at Breton Downs full time last October. “The help that we’ve had at Breton has been incredible,” Evans says. “I was really struggling, trying to homeschool all of them. I worried that I’d made a mistake.” 

From the first time Evans met with Breton Principal Caroline Cannon, Literacy Coach Katie McIntosh, teacher Lisa Valanty and Elementary Intervention Paraeducator Elisabeth Loos, she felt she’d made the right choice sending her kids there. “I’d been trying to do this on my own,” she says. “I told them I felt like there were five educators in the room instead of just me.”

The Evans family is just one of the hundreds of families that will benefit from the return of paraeducators to our elementary schools. Thanks to donors to last summer’s Foundation-led One East campaign, EGRPS has brought back paraeducator support, but in a new and improved delivery model. The restructured EIP model will benefit students even more because it is focused solely on direct student instruction rather than general classroom support. With so many students facing challenges brought on by the pandemic, EIP’s will be able to meet specific math and literacy needs of students from kindergarten through fifth grade. 

The new program, developed in partnership with EGRPS reading interventionists and kindergarten and first grade teachers, will provide math and literacy interventions at all grade levels at all three elementary schools. 

Evans is thrilled with the help they’ve received at Breton. “We’re very, very thankful,” she says. “The progress has been outstanding.”

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