WEBINAR: Helping Students Return Ready to Learn and Thrive


Watch our webinar to learn more about how schools and community organizations can support students during this difficult time. You'll hear from Lydia Martinez-Alvarez on how Springfield Public Schools is connecting families with essential resources—like food, housing, and physical and behavioral health support—as well as summer enrichment opportunities to help address lost learning experiences due to COVID-19. You will also learn about reengaging students who have become disconnected from school during the pandemic from Emmanuel Allen of Boston Public Schools and Jennifer Clammer of the Roca Impact Institute. And Julia Freeland Fisher of the Clayton Christensen Institute weighs in on the importance of relationships both in supporting and reengaging students. The webinar focuses on the actionable strategies schools can use to help students return to school ready to learn and thrive detailed in our Back-to-School Blueprint Action Guides.



Emmanuel Allen
Boston Public Schools Re-Engagement Center Director
As a lifelong resident of Boston, Emmanuel Allen is dedicated to the success and achievement of urban youth. For the past seventeen years, he has worked to create programing and pathways for a variety of populations, ranging from homeless youth, to high school dropouts and those at risk of dropping out, to first-year college students. Emmanuel helped design the Boston Public Schools Re-Engagement Center, a full service center that actively recovers students who have left school. He has also managed and organized programs targeted at reducing violence in urban areas. Emmanuel holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Fitchburg State University in Computer Information Systems and a certificate in Nonprofit Leadership and Management from Boston University. He completed his MBA at Northeastern University. Emmanuel currently works for the Boston Public schools as the director of Boston’s Re-Engagement Center.

Jennifer Clammer
Executive Director, Roca Impact Institute

Jennifer Clammer recently rejoined the Roca team as the Executive Director of the Roca Impact Institute, Roca’s new intensive coaching initiative to reduce urban violence by working with communities to build behavior change interventions and institutional partnerships that positively impact the young people at the center of it. Prior to working with Roca, Jennifer was the Chief Strategy Officer at the Phoenix Charter Academy Network, a network of alternative schools committed to re-engaging young adults toward a high school and college path. Prior to that she was the National Director of Technical Assistance at YouthBuild USA, a 250 + network of alternative education and workforce development programs. With over 20 years of experience in non-profit leadership, Jennifer is passionate about building the capacity of people, organizations and communities to work with young people who are most often left out of existing programs and initiatives. Jennifer received her B.A. from Wesleyan University and her Master’s degree in School/Professional Child Psychology from New York University.  

Julia Freeland Fisher
Director of Education Research, Clayton Christensen Institute

Julia Freeland Fisher is the director of education research at the Clayton Christensen Institute. Her current research focuses on emerging tools and practices to radically expand students’ stock of social capital by enhancing their access to and ability to navigate new peer, mentor, and professional relationships. She is the author of Who You Know: Unlocking Innovations that Expand Students’ Networks (Wiley, 2018).

Lydia E. Martinez-Alvarez
Assistant Superintendent, Springfield Public Schools

Lydia E. Martinez-Alvarez grew up in the North End neighborhood. She is the first Hispanic to serve as Assistant Superintendent in the city of Springfield and began her career with Springfield Public Schools 24 years ago as a substitute teacher. She has held the position of Teacher, Assistant Principal, Principal and other leadership positions. Martinez-Alvarez became a first-generation college student completing her undergraduate studies at Westfield State University in three years, earning a bachelor’s degree in business management. She earned a master’s degree in education from Elms College and a Certificate of Advanced Graduate studies from Westfield State University. Lydia is currently a Trustee of Westfield State University and sits on numerous other Boards. She was recently named as a Women of Impact by Business West.