Jill Hendricks Named Regional Classified Employee of the Year For Ram Landing
Jill Hendricks, is the Student and Family Engagement Liaison for our West Valley School District, has been selected to represent the 25 public school districts of the south central region of Washington State as ESD 107 2022 Regional Classified Employee of the Year. Ms. Jill Hendricks is being recognized due to her extensive work in removing barriers that prevent student success by implementing a whole-family approach to providing support and resources to those experiencing homelessness in West Valley School District.
During the 2020-2021 school year, the number of students in WVSD qualifying as homeless under the McKinney Vento program jumped from 35 to 75 students. At this time, Jill Hendriks was tasked with implementing “Ram Landing”; a pantry of donated essentials to help students and their families with basic needs such as clothing, food and toiletries. By supporting the whole family, the students of WVSD are experiencing less stress and instability.
Jill Hendricks focuses on connecting with students and their families by forming relationships built on trust and respect. Of her work, Hendricks has stated, “Knowing the impact my work can have, I prioritize this relationship-building aspect of my job by devoting the time needed to regularly check in with the students and families served by Ram Landing and ensure we're doing the best we can to meet their needs." Jill also mentions, "Students experience the stress of homelessness in many different ways, and most often that stress and instability prevents them from engaging in their school community. By building relationships with the students in the McKinney Vento program, I am providing one point of stability in their lives, and sometimes that's what it takes for them to be able to focus on their studies and social interactions with their peers. “