Chinese Immersion Program Needs A Leader

Greetings CIP Parents,

I'm here to ask for your help. We need a new Chinese Immersion Program Enrichment Committee (CIPEC) Chairperson(s) and I hope you're going to step up to lead it. Before your eyes glaze over and the thought "I am too busy" materializes, hear me out. You owe me that. Actually, you don't and I'll pay you back that $20 I borrowed real soon-I promise, but hey give me a couple minutes of your time please?

Help us CIP parents, you're our only hope. What is CIPEC? It is a committee that essentially works with the CIP teachers to support the CIP Community. Now, some of you that have been here long enough know that there was a recent name change to CIPECommunity, because that's what being in CIP is about. We have opted to increase the academic challenge for our children to learn to read, write and speak in Chinese in addition to the regular curriculum. Those who work with their children in this challenge reaps the reward, but this challenge is not without... well, challenges. That's where and why there needs to be a CIP Community that supports one another. Now you may already find that there is some community support with a couple parents you've gotten to know, or perhaps figured out some strategy to help your child with their homework, or know of some resource other than Siu Huk Pao which helped your child learn faster, or perhaps you lack all of that without anyone to really turn to for that support. If you've got it, share it. Remember when you first entered the program in Kindergarten/1st Grade and some of the difficulty you faced in navigating the program? Up until recently, there was a place for you to find support, network with other CIP families and build community. I need you to keep it going.

You don't have to do this alone. Grab a partner. Heck, grab three more and split the effort like we did last year! The important thing is to keep this thing going, or it will just be going away. While it would be great for parents in 2nd Grade and up to lead this as they've already acquired survival skills, it is not necessary. Even Kindergarten/1st Grade parents still learning how to excel in the program will do equally great. Former chairs Carolyn Ng, F Vasquez, Phyllis Moir and myself will be there to guide you and assist you in any way we can. Send us an email at and any one of the four of us will respond.

But, I'm too busy. I hate to break it to you, but we all are. I've got plenty of time to hang out, sip coffee and relax on the couch in the evening while tending to my virtual farm/restaurant/castle on my phone, said no West Portal Elementary parent ever. We're looking at 3-4 meetings a year and it is what you make of it. But, it starts with you. Don't rely on that other parent in your class to carry the ball, you'll have better luck walking over with that ball and asking if they'd like to team up. It sounds grim, but it's really not. The volunteer experience is a much better sport played as a team and you can make some great friends while at it.

Well, I was planning on continuing the rant, but I should keep it short and just wrap it up with a call for you to volunteer. Be the hero, because you would be. Really. We'll be here to help guide you in this and will support you. We just need you to take the initiative. I'm busy too - don't make me compare workloads with you. ;)

B o r d o n
Former CIPEC Co-Chair w/Carolyn Ng, F Vasquez and Phyllis Moir



PS: What's with all this Star Wars reference? I sensed a disturbance in The Force, that's why! Anyways, Force Fridays. How about that? All those new Star Wars toys and it's the parents that get all excited about it. It's your duty to get your kids excited about Star Wars too. None of that Trekkies stuff... whoa, now I didn't mean anything by that. I take that back. I like Star Trek too. Star Wars just had more interesting... everything. Even that new BB-8 Droid has everyone foaming. Which, by the way is what I would refer to in Chinese as "嬰兒-八". You read that here first, my friend. Now go live long and prosper and may the force be with you... as our new CIPEC Chairman.