Washtenaw County Writing Centers Project

The first WC2P cohort showing their serious side for Writing Center Day at the Sweetland Center for Writing on the campus of University of Michigan on Monday, 4/29/19.

What is WC2P?

The Washtenaw County Writing Centers Project (WC2P) started when Jeffrey Austin, the director of the Skyline Writing Center, was one of seven teachers admitted into the Michigan Department of Education’s Innovative Educator Corps (IEC).  The IEC is part of the state’s Marshall Plan that aims to make Michigan a top-ten state for education in the next ten years.  Mr. Austin was given funding to share, replicate, and expand Writing Centers across Washtenaw County as a way for schools to leverage peer-to-peer learning to close achievement and opportunity gaps, help students gain valuable college and career skills, and build infrastructures for disciplinary literacies.

WC2P will provide mentorship, coaching, and material support to middle and high schools in Washtenaw County looking to start new or expand existing writing centers.  The goal of the project is to make Washtenaw County a national hub of secondary school equity, literacy, and community-focused writing centers by ensuring that directors and peer tutors have the resources they need to build, sustain, and expand their programs.

This project is in partnership with the Washtenaw Intermediate School District, the Sweetland Center for Writing, the Eastern Michigan University Office of Campus and Community Writing (C2W), 826michigan, the Saline High School Writing Center, and the Secondary School Writing Centers Association (SSWCA).  We’re grateful and thankful to have a robust knowledge and support network for our cohort members!

For more information on WC2P, see our presentation.

Which Washtenaw County schools are in WC2P?

The first WC2P cohort (2018-2019) featured six Washtenaw County secondary schools.

A2STEAM at NorthsideAnn Arbor Public Schools
Dexter High School | Dexter Community Schools
Huron High School | Ann Arbor Public Schools
Pioneer High School | Ann Arbor Public Schools
Saline High School | Saline Area Schools
Saline Middle School | Saline Area Schools

The second WC2P cohort (2019-2020) features four Washtenaw County secondary schools.

Chelsea High School | Chelsea School District
Clague Middle School Ann Arbor Public Schools
Scarlett Middle School | Ann Arbor Public Schools
Tappan Middle School | Ann Arbor Public Schools

Who is on the WC2P Leadership + Advisory Board?

The WC2P Leadership and Advisory Board consists of stakeholders from a variety of institutions and organizations in Washtenaw County.  The team includes secondary school and university tutors, secondary school and university writing center directors, and community writing center coordinators and directors.

Jeffrey Austin | Skyline Writing Center
austinj@a2schools.org | @MrAustinA2

Ann Blakeslee | EMU Office of Campus + Community Writing
ablakesle@emich.edu |@BlakesleeAnn

Cathy Fleischer | EMU Office of Campus + Community Writing
cfleische@emich.edu | @CathyFleischer1

Christine ModeySweetland Center for Writing at the University of Michigan
cmodey@umich.edu | @cmodey

Catherine Calabro | 826michigan

Megan Gilson | 826michigan

Jen Denzin | Saline High School Writing Center
denzinj@salineschools.org | @JenDenzin

Madelyn Clark | Saline High School Writing Center
clarkma@salineschools.org| @Ms_ClarkSHS

Kate Hutton | Herndon Writing Center + SSWCA President
kghutton@fcps.edu | @kghutton87

Past Leadership + Advisory Board Members
Sarah Andrew-Vaughan | Ann Arbor Public Schools
Skylar Burkhardt | Skyline Writing Center + Sweetland Center for Writing
Emma Rose Carpenter Skyline Writing Center
Carsten Finholt Skyline Writing Center

WC2P in the Media

WeLoveAnnArbor: Skyline Teacher Jeff Austin Gets $10,000 for Writing Center Work (December 2018)
University of Michigan: Sweetland Peer Tutor Alumnus Jeffrey Austin Named to the Michigan Innovative Educator Corps (December 2018)
MEA Voice: Peer Tutors Fight Inequities (October 2019)

WC2P: The First Year

WC2P Kickoff Event | Saline Area Schools District Offices
Saturday, 4/13/19

At this event, new writing center directors were surveyed about their mentoring needs, and they were led through a process of missioning, visioning, and initial planning supported by current peer tutors at Skyline and community partners from Eastern Michigan University, the University of Michigan, and 826michigan.

Writing Center Day at the University of Michigan | Sweetland Center for Writing
Monday, 4/29/19

Directors and their tutors worked together to learn more about what writing center basics, such as what they are and can do, to think about the site-specific needs of their school and how a writing center can serve those needs, and to collaborate on building a mission and vision that was inclusive of multiple voices and stakeholders. In addition, students and teachers provided feedback about the planning for the Tutor Collaborative and Director Retreat.

Tutor Collaborative + Directors’ Retreat Skyline High School
Monday, 5/20/19

Tutors from Skyline and Saline High Schools worked with tutors from the other cohort schools on peer tutoring mindsets and basics, such as using growth-oriented language to encourage asset-based tutoring, while directors met to discuss data collection and program assessment strategies, including what data to collect, how to collect it, and how to frame results for stakeholders in a way that is consistent with the center’s mission and vision. At the end, tutors and directors participated in a circle to discuss what they have learned and questions that still need answers. Community partners are working with cohort schools to answer remaining questions and provide ongoing mentorship and support as schools get ready to open their centers.

2019-2020 Cohort Calendars

First Cohort

Rich Kent Working Session Monday, 9/16/19, 9:00 AM
Saline High School

WC2P Year 2 Kickoff | Friday, 11/1/19, 3:30 PM
York Ann Arbor

Second Cohort

WC2P Year 2 KickoffFriday, 11/1/19, 3:30 PM
York Ann Arbor

Writing Center Jumpstart Session | Tuesday, 11/12/19, 8:30 AM
Skyline High School

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