MEP Conference

The Migrant Education Department of ESD 123 invites both parents and students to join us at the Three Rivers Convention Center in Kennewick on February 23, 2024 for the Together Towards Tomorrow Migrant Parent and Student Conference. The day will include a parent-focused track and a student-focused track.

Registration has CLOSED

If you have questions, please contact: Viviana Magallon at [email protected] or 509.316.8332

Conference Agenda:

  • 8:00-9:00 AM - Registration
  • 9:00-9:10 AM – Welcome
  • 9:10-10:10 AM - Keynote: Ernesto Mejia
  • 10:10-10:20 AM - Logistics
  • 10:20-10:30 AM – Transition 
  • 10:30 AM - 11:30 PM – Session 1
  • 11:30-12:30 PM – Lunch 
  • 12:40 -1:40 PM – Session 2
  • 1:50-2:50 PM – Session 3
  • 3:00-3:30 PM – Closing

Migrant PARENT Conference

Join us at our upcoming parent conference for a unique learning opportunity that covers a broad spectrum of essential topics. Discover post-secondary paths that can open doors to endless opportunities. Learn about farmworker rights, ensuring that all voices are heard and valued. Gain insights into advocating for your students and becoming their most effective advocate. Learn effective strategies for incorporating learning at home, fostering your child's growth beyond the classroom. Lastly, explore the vital realm of mental health support and services, equipping yourself with the tools to ensure your child's emotional well-being. This conference promises a rich learning opportunity, empowering you to guide your child towards a brighter future. 

Migrant STUDENT Conference

Get ready to ignite your future at our student conference! Discover diverse post-secondary paths that await you, opening doors to your dreams and aspirations. Gain insights into essential mental health support and services to nurture your well-being. Plus, be inspired by motivational speakers who are changing the game for today's youth. This conference is your chance to discover, learn, and be inspired – a unique opportunity to set your course toward a brilliant tomorrow. 

Keynote Speaker: Ernesto Mejia

Ernesto MejiaCoolspeak Speaker & Parental Engagement Expert

Ernesto Mejia, the proud son of Mexican immigrants, is a true example of the American dream. Diagnosed with the rare disease of Guillain-Barré Syndrome at the age of 16 that left him temporarily paralyzed, he was not supposed to be a successful student, much less a College Dean of Students.

Through his hardships, Ernesto learned to never give up on life, he now speaks to students, parents, and teachers about overcoming obstacles and never giving up on the American dream: education.

Learn About the Presenters!

Craig BaileyDr. Craig Bailey

Educational Service District 123
Special Services Director
Dr. Bailey is a credentialed School Psychologist and Program Administrator and has worked in the private sector, in the public schools as a special services administrator and school psychologist, and program administrator at the ESD with nearly 35 years of experience in the special education field.

Molly BrinkleyMolly Brinkley

Educational Service District 123
Regional Educational Technology Coordinator
Molly Brinkley provides instructional technology and professional development services to school districts. With 18 years in education, she has experience working will all levels of educators to enhance classroom instruction through technology integration, educational leadership, data analysis, and effective classroom practices. 

Malorie KahlMalorie Kahl

Educational Service District 123
Attendance and Re-Engagement Coordinator
Malorie Kahl is the Attendance and Re-Engagement Coordinator for ESD 123. The program strives to support schools with professional development, students with direct service, and families with understanding of the importance or regular attendance and how to seek support. Coming from a background in classroom teaching, Malorie has worked with youth of all ages and has a passion for impacting the environments and supports students have to succeed in all of their endeavors.

Lisa BrouwerLisa Brouwer-Thompson

Educational Service District 123
Art Expression Trauma and Resilience Coordinator

Lisa Brouwer-Thompson received a BA in Fine Arts from Calvin College in Grand Rapids, MI. She completed studies online through the Trauma-Informed Practices and Expressive Arts Therapy Institute. For the past 30 plus years she has maintained her own mural painting business while working in education. She paints indoor and outdoor murals of all sizes for commercial and residential clients throughout the USA and Canada. She often employs students to help paint with her in an effort to pass on the trade. Lisa currently lives in Richland, WA where she continues to run The Nakedwall, her mural painting company. In 2023 Lisa started her own A.R.T.S (Artful Response to Tiered Support) program for the Educational Service District 123 serving 26 school districts in tiered support for students and families experiencing trauma.

Cindy MorrisCindy Morris

Educational Service District 123
Art Expression Trauma and Resilience Specialist

Cindy Morris received a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Central Washington University in Ellensburg WA. She has 20 years of experience in early childhood education working with staff, children and families. She has extensive knowledge and experience in prevention and intervention services, such as ACES, poverty, trauma-informed caregiving and resiliency. Cindy is trained in trauma-informed expressive arts therapy and holds certifications in trauma and resilience in education, where she embraces her passion in performing arts to engage learners of all ages. With 15 years of experience in facilitating adult learning, Cindy understands how it directly impacts student learning.

Sara HedlundSara Hedlund

Educational Service District 123
Migrant Literacy Coordinator

Sara Hedlund is a passionate advocate for education, literacy, and the transformative power of learning. With a bachelor's in Elementary Education and master's degree in Curriculum Instruction and 10 years of experience in education, Sara has dedicated her career to fostering a love for learning and empowering individuals through education.

Sara has conducted workshops and professional development sessions on various aspects of literacy, education, and personal development. With a keen understanding of the importance of literacy in shaping the future, she strives to inspire others to create supportive learning environments. Sara is committed to bridging the gap between home and school, emphasizing the crucial role of families in nurturing literacy skills. She believes that literacy is not just a skill but a gateway to opportunities and personal growth. Join Sara Hedlund in their mission to empower individuals, families, and communities through effective literacy supports, creating a brighter future for all.

Esmael Xiutecpatl Lopez

Northwest Justice Project
Outreach Educator and Community Engagement Worker

Esmael Xiutecpatl Lopez is a Native Texican who grew up in the Northwest. Growing up in Skagit Valley, he spent his summers working in the fields, trying to contribute to his family. He was deeply affected by witnessing the mistreatment of farmworkers firsthand. This led to 10 years of service as chair, co-chair and many other positions within the farmworker solidarity committee. He lived in Seattle for 12 years serving in a number of community leadership roles within organizations focused on social change and community advancement. After a decade of community organizing, teaching “know your rights” workshops, financial literacy classes, organizing the May Day March, Esmael received many awards for this work. More recently, while working for the Department of Health, Esmael assisted in the creation of Washington State’s first-ever Office of Equity and Environmental Justice Task Force. In 2020 after seeing the disproportionate effect of COVID on the Mexican/Latinx and more specifically the farmworker community, Esmael realized that his unique skills could be best utilized in Central Washington. In October of 2020, he began working as an outreach educator and community engagement worker with the Farmworker Unit at NJP. He continues to serve the farmworker community and remains diligent in fighting for the fair treatment of all workers. Esmael is a Capitan of Aztec dance.

Mariana Garcia

Northwest Justice Project
Labor Trafficking Outreach Worker
Mariana Garcia was born and raised in the Yakima Valley. As the daughter of Mexican immigrants, Mariana witnessed firsthand the racism and abuse immigrants go through in order to give their families a better life. After working long summers in the fruit packing sheds to pay for school, Mariana made a commitment that after she finished school she would return to the valley and contribute to the betterment of her community. After graduating from college, Mariana immediately got involved working for women’s reproductive justice and later in union organizing. In 2020, she decided to take a position with NJP’s Farmworker Unit as their labor trafficking outreach worker. There along with the rest of the outreach team she has continued to do community education around workers’ rights throughout the pandemic.

Viviana MagallonViviana Magallon

Educational Service District 123
Migrant Student Engagement Coordinator

Viviana is a first-generation Mexican American Graduate, she believes in the power of education and the generational impacts that education or post-secondary pathways can create for others. She is an advocate for the Migrant Education Program and believes in serving with a passion for student and family growth. She is committed to serving the Migrant Education Program families through engagement opportunities that can open doors for endless possibilities. Fueling her work is a passion for creativity, ongoing learning, enthusiasm, and a commitment to advocacy.

Adilenne EspindolaAdilenne Espindola 

Educational Service District 123
Migrant Community and Family Engagement Coordinator

Adilenne is the epitome of someone who will advocate for resources, create partnerships, and fight to improve educational access for underrepresented students. As the current Migrant Community and Family Engagement Coordinator at ESD 123, she continues to fulfill her promise of supporting students and families with educational disparities. The passion that Adilenne carriers throughout her journey has inspired many to get involved in equal rights for all in higher education.

Shelby JensenShelby Jensen

Educational Service District 123
Safety Center Coordinator

Shelby spent over 20 years in schools working with youth, parents and educators. She currently works as ESD 123 Safety Center Coordinator to assist schools with a variety of safety topics. 

Jason HarringtonJason Harrington

Jason has been in law enforcement for over 16 years, and in a variety of roles, he currently works as a School Resource Officer.

Miranda Sahagun BarrazaMiranda Sahagun Barraza

Miranda holds a Bachelor of Arts in Public Health Global Health from the University of Washington and is passionate about spreading the wealth of knowledge surrounding public health topics. One of her focuses is the HOPE (Healthy Outcomes from Positive Experiences) framework and the impact that positive childhood experiences have on mitigating adverse childhood experiences. Born and raised in the Tri Cities, she is driven to foster positive transformation and leave a lasting impact in her community.

Daphne GallegosDaphne Gallegos, MPH

Benton-Franklin Health District
Public Health Educator

Daphne is a passionate public health professional with over six years of experience in the community and across the globe. In her current role, she enjoys empowering young people to choose safe decisions in their daily lives. Having spent half her adolescence in the Tri-Cities, she feels a connectedness to the diverse communities in eastern Washington and a call to improve health outcomes for marginalized populations. Daphne employs strong public health ethics and data-driven frameworks to bring about positive change in her community.

Melanie CasciatoMelanie Casciato

Columbia Basin College
Director for Student Recruitment

Melanie has worked in higher education for many years assisting students and their families with learning what college means.  She is an advocate for students knowing the benefits of education and learning how to pay for it.  With extensive experience in financial aid and scholarships, she currently serves as the Director for Student Recruitment at Columbia Basin College where she oversees the Outreach team.  Over the past year, CBC was the recipient of state funds to create Financial Aid Outreach in our ESD schools which Melanie oversees as well. 

Lucy FernandezLucy Fernandez

Educational Service District 123
School Nurse

Lucy Fernandez is a first-generation Mexican graduate who brings invaluable insights into the challenges faced by our migrant families, drawing from her own personal experiences. Recognizing the paramount importance of education, Lucy tirelessly endeavors to alleviate healthcare burdens that our migrant students may encounter. Leveraging her background as a Migrant Nurse, her overarching objective is to assist families in navigating the healthcare system in a language they understand. Demonstrating empathy and a steadfast commitment, Lucy advocates for our students and their families, striving to pave the way for a brighter future.

Raul ChavezRaul Chavez 

Kennewick School District
Mental Health Therapist

Migrant mental health therapist working for the Kennewick School District. Helping children and family with managing mental health obstacles that affect academic success, family dynamics, and emotional regulation.

Jesus ContrerasJesus Contreras

Kennewick Police Department

Officer Jesus Contreras grew up in Eastern Oregon. He later attended Treasure Valley Community College (TVCC) where he led community outreach and recruiting events targeting first-generation Latino Students. Jesus Contreras went on to pursue his Bachelor’s degree at Eastern Oregon University where he graduated with a Bachelors in Sociology and Anthropology with an emphasis in social welfare. In February of 2018, he was hired by the Kennewick Police Department where since his graduation from the Basic Law Enforcement Academy in June of 2018 was assigned to patrol. Since 2018, Officer Jesus Contreras has become an instructor in less lethal platforms used by the department, Patrol Training Officer, Public Information Officer, and is one of the Spanish Speaking Officers working patrol. Lastly, in 2020, he was assigned as a Gang Officer for the Kennewick Police Department. Officer Jesus Contreras takes pride in engaging with the Spanish speaking community of the Tri-Cities and works every day towards strengthening the relationship between the local police department and the Spanish speaking community which they serve.

Jesus MotaJesus Mota 

Columbia Basin College
Dean for Career and Technical Education

Jesus Mota is a higher education professional serving as Dean for Career and Technical Education at Columbia Basin College in Pasco, WA. He has eighteen years of leadership experience in higher education. He is a first generation college graduate and has earned a Master of Business Administration.

José Hernandez 

José Hernandez is a proud son of a migrant family and is one of 18 children. José faced many social & emotional challenges in his childhood and poverty. José survived and even thrived with the help of two teachers who recognized his potential had the courage to visit his home. This began his process of being able to rise above many of the issues associated with a dysfunctional family. Hernandez now has the privilege of "paying it forward" by helping families with similar challenges. Mr. Hernandez chose to go into the streets and work with young people who were influenced by gangs and drugs however, recognized that working with students alone would not provide the necessary social, emotional & academic changes our students needed. We needed to engage parents and school systems became the conduit to recruit parents by using innovative strategies. Once parents showed up and were embraced and accepted, José saw miracles in the students...and their families. Mr. Hernandez has won multiple awards for his outstanding contributions and has served on multiple boards. José has been blessed to have witnessed lives transformed through family and community engagement to survive the abusive life he endured and found “Hope in the Midst of Challenge”.

Jim KindleJim Kindle

Educational Service District 123
Regional Career Connected Learning Coordinator

Jim Kindle is the Regional Career Connected Learning Coordinator for ESD 123. Jim is dedicated to fostering meaningful connections between education and careers. With a passion for empowering students, educators, and businesses, he has curated innovative programs that bridge the gap between classroom learning and real-world opportunities. Jim’s role involves collaborating with K-12 schools, business and industry, higher education, and community partners to develop dynamic career connected learning experiences, internships, and mentorships that align with emerging regional workforce needs. Through strategic planning and resourceful initiatives, his aim is to equip students with the skills, knowledge, and networks vital for success in their future careers. Jim is committed to cultivating a thriving ecosystem of learning and professional growth driven to create impactful pathways for students, preparing them to excel in a rapidly evolving job market.

Mariana GaminoMariana Gamino

TC Futures
Migrant Out of School Youth Re-Engagement Specialist

Mariana is a first-generation graduate who is deeply committed to empowering youth. As a passionate advocate, she serves as a Migrant Out of School Youth Re-Engagement Specialist, channeling her energy into guiding and supporting those often overlooked by society. Marianas dedication emanates from a genuine love for working directly with youth, fueling her drive to make a meaningful difference in their lives every day. 

Felipe ZavalaFelipe Zavala

TC Futures
TC Futures Regional Coordinator

Felipe is the TC Futures Regional Coordinator and has been part of TC Futures since its doors first opened in the summer of 2019. He worked as the case manager for the center’s Kennewick students. This past November he began a new role as the TC Futures Regional Coordinator. This new position supports the Columbia, Finley, Kiona-Benton City, North Franklin, and Prosser School Districts and their Open Doors GED+ students to ensure that the young adults residing in the districts outside of the Tri-Cities benefit from all the services and supports that TC Futures has to offer.
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