Park Connects

Park Connects is a school-wide program designed to support our students' health and well-being and help reduce the risk factors that contribute to unhealthy behaviors. Park Connects brings together parents, students, faculty, and the broader community.

Our Goals

  • Create, strengthen, and support the connections between and among students and adults in our community.
  • Reduce the risk factors that contribute to unhealthy behaviors and strengthen the protective factors that foster young people’s healthy development and physical, social, and emotional well-being.

Long-standing research demonstrates that prevention of unhealthy behaviors is associated with effective parenting; strong, positive family and school bonds; clear standards and limit-setting; opportunities for healthy risk-taking; postponement and/or reduction of inappropriate behaviors; and positive role models. Participants gain better understanding of:

  • Risk-taking behaviors, healthy and unhealthy
  • Child and adolescent development
  • Effective parenting skills
  • Cultural and social pressures on young people and families
  • Benefits of parent networking 

Park Connects Program Offerings 

PARENT DINNERS AND DISCUSSIONS

Sponsored by the Parents’ Association, these grade level parent-to-parent events allow for relationships to develop, experience to be gathered, and an ethos of a connected community to be built. Conversation topics range from how to get a five-year-old to fall asleep on her own, to more difficult conversations later on about drinking and driving for the parents of 17-year-olds. For more than 10 years, these discussion groups, led by trained parent facilitators, have created a culture of conversation and connectivity among Park parents, demonstrated by the “Park Connects moments” — as parents call them — that now take place every day, in the carpool line, on the sidelines of a game, or in a phone call. As decades of research confirm, there’s no question that a more connected community provides a healthier and safer environment for all of our children.

PARENT EDUCATION WORKSHOPS

These topical workshops will guide parents through grade level specific challenges. Led by members of the Park School Health Team (Zella Adams, Krista Dhruv, Debbie Roffman, and Dave Tracey) and, on occasion, outside experts in the health and parenting fields, these seminars provide insights into the latest research, as well as opportunities for thoughtful discussion and getting to know your peer parents. Our Health Team brings decades of experience working with students and parents on the central issues that frame the Parent Education Workshops: child and adolescent development; risk-taking behaviors, both healthy and unhealthy; effective parenting skills; and cultural and social pressures on young people and families.

Park Connects Team

Park Connects programs and activities are created and run by a team of Park School faculty and staff and advised by parent volunteers.  


Sharen Becker, Karin Tobin

Park Connects Parent Co-Chairs

Krista Dhruv

Middle/Upper School Counselor, Life Skills Teacher and Park Connects Program Administrator kdhruv@parkschool.net

Zella Adams

Lower School Counselor zadams@parkschool.net

Debbie Roffman

Life Skills and Human Sexuality Teacher droffman@parkschool.net

Dave Tracey

Middle/Upper School Counselor and Life Skills Teacher dtracey@parkschool.net
 

 

Park Connects efforts are supported by

Toni St. John, President, Parents' Association
Dan Paradis, Head of School
Ellen Small, Parent Program Coordinator
Sarah Baird, Board of Trustees 
Dan Hirschhorn '75, President, Board of Trustees