The Migrant Education Program for the North Country New York METS has been highlighted in this month's "Provost's Corner" by the Provost of SUNY Potsdam.
SUNY Potsdam is home to the North Country Migrant Education Program, which has been in existence for over 30 years. The program’s mission is to ensure that high quality, coordinated, efficient, and comprehensive educational and advocacy services are provided to all eligible school-aged migrant students. The program serves students and their families in St. Lawrence, Clinton, Essex, and Franklin Counties. The plight of the migrant worker and their families came into the spotlight on Thanksgiving Day 1960 when Edward R. Murrow presented a documentary entitled “Harvest of Shame.” This documentary highlighted the lack of consistent education for the workers’ children and was the impetus for action across the country.
The North Country program is currently one of the largest in the state. Our region has many agricultural migratory workers who move constantly due to their employment in agriculture. This lack of consistency and high mobility creates unique challenges for school-aged students. Migrant Education fills the gaps for these students and creates a level playing field educationally. The North Country Migrant Education Program offers a multitude of opportunities ranging from home-based pre-school/school readiness instruction to adolescent programs. The in-school programs include school-year tutoring as well as participation in summer experiences including STEM and ELA learning in a small-group atmosphere. The students also go on exciting field trips and the program sponsors several students to attend 4-H camp for a week. The adolescent programs include the annual St. Lawrence River Trek and CSI: North Country, an in-depth look at different facets of law enforcement. Congratulations to all the staff involved with the North Country Migrant Education program for serving this important population in our region.