Melissa Young explains what her position at Montgomery Blair High School entails.
“I would just say go ahead and start the conversation [in Spanish] because a lot of times a new student will feel comfortable just knowing that you understand what they’re saying.”
For Melissa Young, every day is an opportunity to support someone new.
Aside from teaching an online class and managing the BLISS tutoring program, Young is the Latino Achievement Coordinator at Blair. She describes her role as “working with Spanish speaking students and their families to make sure they get the services they need [and] get their questions answered.”
In an effort to continue making Blair a more inclusive environment for new students, Young founded and currently runs the club “Without Borders”. This new-to-Blair club “is an effort to make Blair more welcoming to students arriving from other countries”, through a variety of service projects. For instance, Young recently lead the club in creating “welcome bags for students to receive when they arrive”, which included a variety of school supplies and Blair merchandise.
Ultimately, the most important thing for the Blair community to do to welcome new students is to reach out to them, Young believes. She encourages students (and staff) to “[use their] Spanish to talk to recently arrived students.”
Young’s work spans many aspects of inclusion, all of which involve access, support, and engagement for newcomers
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