We interrupt this week of Rube Goldberg projects, rock concerts and bookmaking to bring you the following news: I was recently selected as the 2012 North Dakota delegate to Parenting magazine’s Mom Congress of Education and Learning! As such, I’ll be heading off to Washington, DC at the end of April to join one representative from each state to exchange ideas about how to improve our nation’s schools.
I must say, as I’m getting to know these other women through their blogs and on facebook, I’m amazed by the incredible energy, experience, and dedication they’re bringing to the table. It’s exciting and humbling all at once. I’m looking forward to it.
At the suggestion of Mom Congress, I’m posting my press release here on my blog, so that you can learn more about the experience along with me. I’m a newbie to this kind of thing, and it will be fun to uncover this new world together with you!
BISMARCK MOM WINS TRIP TO WASHINGTON, D.C. TO REPRESENT NORTH DAKOTA
AT PARENTING MAGAZINE’S
MOM CONGRESS® ON EDUCATION AND LEARNING CONFERENCE
GWYN RIDENHOUR TO JOIN PARENTING, U.S. SECRETARY OF EDUCATION
ARNE DUNCAN, AND ONE OUTSTANDING MOM EDUCATION ADVOCATE FROM EVERY STATE IN WASHINGTON, D.C. APRIL 29th – MAY 1st
Bismarck, ND, March 5, 2012 – Parenting magazine today announced that Gwyn Ridenhour of Bismarck has been selected to represent North Dakota at the third-annual Mom Congress on Education and Learning conference in Washington, D.C. this April 29th through May 1st. Ridenhour was chosen for her outstanding contributions and dedication to improving local schools.
A total of fifty-one delegates, representing each state and the District of Columbia, have been selected by Parenting from a record-setting number applications submitted through Parenting.com. Each will receive an all-expense-paid trip to D.C. for the event, where they’ll have the opportunity to connect with national leaders in education, Parenting editors, and past Mom Congress delegates to exchange ideas on how to improve our nation’s schools.
“It’s an amazing opportunity,” says Ridenhour of her excitement to be a part of Mom Congress. “I hope to bring back ideas that will benefit students and teachers alike.”
The theme of the 2012 Mom Congress conference, “Teach Me Something New,” is dedicated to fostering the crucially important relationship between parents and their children’s teachers. For the third consecutive year, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan headlines the roster of education and advocacy leaders scheduled to address the delegates at the conference. Others scheduled to appear include NBC News’ Education Nation, First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move!, Save the Children, National PTA, National Education Association, Teach for America, and more.
In her work as an education advocate, Ridenhour partners with her own children to provide examples of individualized, project-based learning that is focused on creativity. Her daughter, an 8 year old author of two books, and her son, an 11 year old composer, professional percussionist, and game inventor, speak to kids at elementary schools about following one’s passion. Ridenhour is dedicated to empowering children and improving opportunities for kids to follow their own creative paths. From 2005 through 2009, she founded and ran the Arlis Saxon Eco-Kids Project. The Saxon Project challenged elementary school students to write grant proposals to improve the environmental footprint of their schools; during its four years, the project granted over $5,000 to 11 different child-designed proposals. She is also an advocate for gifted children and serves as the regional contact for the Gifted Homeschoolers Forum. Ridenhour blogs about her education work at gwynridenhour.wordpress.com.
Empowered and inspired by attending the conference, past delegates have returned to their states to create significant change in their school systems, affecting the lives of thousands of children nationwide. In 2010, delegates worked with Parenting editors at the conference to create the “Lesson Plan for Change”, a blueprint to empower parents to get more involved in their children’s education that appeared in Parenting School Years magazine and the bestselling companion guide to the documentary Waiting for Superman.
The 2011 class of delegates’ accomplishments include the creation of a nationwide book drive in support of early literacy, Books Make it Better; recognition through The White House “Champions of Change” program; the improvement of several school lunch programs across the country; and the development of new educational resources and programs in nearly every state, from early science education workshops in Florida to a new parental advocacy program, Camp Educate, in California.
Faculty members from Georgetown University’s School of Continuing Studies—the Mom Congress educational provider—will lead informative sessions at the conference this year, offering advocacy training workshops to help delegates take what they’ve learned and put it to work in their own communities.
Driven by the ever-increasing role that parents play in advocating for positive change in the education system, Parenting magazine launched the Mom Congress initiative in 2009 to celebrate and connect parents working to improve our nation’s schools. Each month, Parenting and Parenting.com give readers and the 25,000+ Mom Congress members updated educational news and resources to help them make a difference and bring about positive changes for students.
For more information, visit Parenting.com/momcongress.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT:
About The Parenting Group
The Parenting Group, home of the Parenting, Babytalk and Conceive brands, reaches moms over 15 million times every month through magazines, digital media, custom content, and events. TPG’s publications include: Parenting School Years, for moms with children in kindergarten through elementary school; Parenting Early Years, for moms of infants, toddlers and preschoolers; Babytalk, for new moms and moms-to-be; and Conceive, for women trying to get pregnant. TPG’s other media properties include: the Babytalk Pregnancy Planner; the Parenting.com and ConceiveOnline.com web sites; MomConnection®, a nationally-representative online research network; and a custom content unit. The Parenting Group is a division of Bonnier Corporation.