Hospital Program Wins Grand Prize for Innovation in Student Services

As the teachers at Providence Willamette Falls prepare to deliver a presentation at the annual Association of Educational Service Agencies National Conference, we wanted to recognize their achievement of winning the grand prize for Innovation in Student Services.


May 20, 2016

Multnomah ESD’s “Lighting the Way” program earned the Grand Prize at the 2016 Innovation Awards  presented by Oregon Association for ESDs. The award recognizes a program or service that changes the conversation from what we must do to what we can do differently and effectively to improve the lives of students.
The “Lighting the Way” model provides immediate academic support to students receiving care in acute psychiatric hospital units and prepares districts to support students who have been discharged and are re-entering school.   The model provides this support through teacher liaisons that Awardfacilitate communication between medical and school district teams. When children enter hospital care, MESD teachers assess their immediate and long-term learning needs and communicate with the student’s home district.  Teachers notify districts that a student is receiving care and may request or make a recommendation for an IEP or 504 plan. When the child is discharged, MESD teachers provide districts with information that allow them to prepare appropriate supports for student re-entry.  As part of the model, MESD developed HIPPA and FRPA compliant hospital discharge forms.  These forms are completed by medical teams and contain information the districts need to prepare and provide appropriate supports to students re-entering the school setting.  MESD teachers also provide academic updates to district staff to ensure a smooth hand-off from hospital instruction to home district instruction.  MESD has served over 300 students as part of the Lighting the Way model.

(Pictured, Left to Right: Mary Botkin, Board member, Staff members Nalani Wineman,  Lisa O’Toole, Sheila Schacher, and Scott Perry, Superintendent) 

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