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NJPA announces WDC Elementary as an ENVoY demonstration site

Wadena-Deer Creek School District is looking to improve academic achievement by using Educational Non-Verbal Yardsticks or ENVoY. Thirty-four WDC teachers and support staff have already received ENVoY training and over the next three years more will learn these effective strategies and techniques that help prevent disruptions and manage discipline within the classroom.

To help implement these techniques, National Joint Powers Alliance (NJPA) announced Sept. 3 that Wadena-Deer Creek Elementary was awarded funding to become an ENVoY Certification and Demonstration Site. The announcement was made last week at a ceremony celebrating this prestigious status.

NJPA will provide a funding award of about $75,000 to WDC Elementary to be used toward ENVoY training.

"Congratulations to your administration and staff for meeting the criteria required to receive this funding award. Our congratulations to you as leaders in this work that is not being done anywhere else in Greater Minnesota," said Rynell Schock, Leader of Education Services at NJPA.

WDC Principal Louis Rutten said the funding will assist with training teachers and support staff over the next three years or so.

"It is quite exciting for us since it'll provide teachers with training and coaching opportunities to learn classroom educational non-verbal strategies to help maximize time spent on curriculum. The student/adult relationships within our school will become even better as we learn to become more proficient with the ENVoY strategies," said Rutten.

The ENVoY approach is based on Michael Grinder's best-selling book for educators, "ENVoY: Your Personal Guide to Classroom Success."

ENVoY is the name given to a system of non-verbal techniques used to improve classroom climate, enhance student productivity and decrease the level of staff burnout. The non-verbal communication skills that staff members learn during ENVoY training will positively influence the single most powerful leverage point in education: the teacher/student relationship.

Teachers who utilize the full range of nonverbal management skills are able to reinforce consistent and fair parameters while preserving their relationships with each student, regardless of unique learning styles or cultural backgrounds.

Teachers who implement the ENVoY system gain an average of an hour more curriculum time per week. ENVoY is a vehicle to shift educators from seeing themselves as those in power to "instruments of influence."