This month’s ‘Noche Familiar’ is about haircuts and so much more

TETON VALLEY, IDA – March’s Noche Familiar is Wednesday, March 13, at 6:30pm. This March version of the popular monthly event brings a new meaning to career and college-ready by providing free haircuts. Staff and students from the Paul Mitchell School in Rexburg will be on hand at the Teton High School cafeteria in Driggs to lend their sartorial experience to those who attend the cross-cultural event.

The idea is that those who come to Noche Familiar will benefit from the Paul Mitchell folks grooming them in a style that’s appropriate for their career or academic path, according to Doug Tedford, the English Language Learner Coordinator for Teton School District 401.

Free haircuts are available to all K-12 students, families, and community members.

While everyone waits for their turn, Clark Atkins, a BYU-Idaho student who is fully Spanish-English bilingual, will provide some motivational comments. Atkins, who has done volunteer service in Peru, enjoys motivational speaking and has a high interest in service to the community.

The Paul Mitchell visit is among several by regional organizations to assist with this popular program. For example, at December’s Noche Familiar, the Lost River Tribe, a dance group from Rexburg, performed its hip-hop show to rave reviews to attendees. Some two-dozen youngsters and young-at-heart joined the troupe onstage to learn some of the moves.

Noche Familiar typically combines three main components each month—a parent or student academic conversation, some multicultural fun, and snacks. The multi-cultural fun takes many forms, from the dance group to creating crafts and even watching a movie. And while the December event featured a free dinner (turkey with south-of-the-border fixings), volunteers provide the refreshments most months.

The parent academic forum piece provides a critical medium for engaging both Spanish- and English-speaking parents. It’s meant to be a driving force behind student improvement on state tests, and to motivate accelerated acquisition of English for school and career success, Tedford said.

This month, it’s the sharing of student goals and Atkins’ conversation. Sometimes this is a presentation by TSD educators, a look at the school and local library resources, or other motivational speeches intended to inspire determination, persistence and confidence to overcome challenges and reach goals. The primary messages are usually given in Spanish and then translated into English.

Teton School District 401 is the primary sponsor of Noche Familiar, but it is presented with the assistance of a diverse group of parents, volunteers, and community partners, including many Teton Valley nonprofits. The Spark Foundation, Radical Neighboring, and the Teton Valley News sponsor advertising for the event each month.

For more information contact Tedford by email, or call (208) 228-5923.

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