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2018 McKinney-Vento Liaison Training (Spokane)


  • Jess Lewis
  • Melinda Dyer
  • Barbara Duffield
  • Ella DeVerse
  • Patricia Julianelle


The OSPI McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Annual training will provide resources and information relating to the implementation of the federal McKinney-Vento Act, the federal Every Student Succeeds Act, and provisions in state law. Material is applicable to all school districts, and is targeted to the designated District Homeless Liaisons. This free workshop will include presentations from OSPI and SchoolHouse Connection staff. Lunch will be provided during a full day session.

Event Notes

Melinda Dyer: Melinda Dyer has been an advocate for the educational rights of homeless students for more than two decades as the Washington State Coordinator for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth. Melinda oversees the implementation of the federal McKinney-Vento Act in school districts across Washington state, providing training, technical assistance, grant management and resource development.  She has worked to inform state and federal education policy related to the educational rights of homeless students, partnering with local, state and national colleagues to improve the educational outcomes for children and youth in homeless situations. Prior to taking her post at the Washington State Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, Melinda was a public high school and junior high school teacher, focusing efforts to support vulnerable and at-risk youth. Melinda earned both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from Oregon State University in Health Education, graduating with honors.

Jess Lewis: Jess Lewis is currently serving as the Homeless Student Stability education Program (HSSeP) Supervisor at the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction. During her tenure at OSPI, Jess has worked in Homeless Education, Equity and Civil Rights, Behavior Intervention, and K-12 Discipline.  

Jess has her BA in Social Welfare from the University of Washington and a Master’s in Public Administration from Grand Canyon University.She is currently working on her Educational Doctorate in K-12 Leadership.  She is a trained mediator, crisis intervention specialist, and restorative justice facilitator.  

Ella DeVerse: Ella DeVerse is the Program Specialist for McKinney-Vento, Education of Homeless Children and Youth at the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. In this role, she provides training and technical assistance to district liaisons throughout the state.  Prior to working at OSPI, she served as the McKinney-Vento Homeless Liaison for the Aberdeen School District. Ella has a BA from Pacific Lutheran University in Anthropology with an emphasis in the cultural anthropology of transitional peoples and Latin American cultures. She is currently working on a Master’s in Public Administration with an emphasis in Government and Policy from Grand Canyon University.

Barbara Duffield: Barbara Duffield is Executive Director of SchoolHouse Connection. For more than 20 years, she has bridged policy and practice in early care, education, housing, and homelessness. Barbara began her career as a tutor for children experiencing homelessness in Washington DC in 1990. She was the Director of Education for the National Coalition for the Homeless from 1994-2003, where she collaborated with service providers, educators, federal agencies, and Congressional offices to address children’s issues. She served as the Director of Policy and Programs at the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth in Washington D.C from 2003-2016, leading national efforts to strengthen federal protections and services for children and youth experiencing homelessness, from early childhood through higher education

Barbara helped to establish and develop the NAEHCY Scholarship Program, a comprehensive scholarship program for youth who have experienced homelessness and wish to pursue higher education. She has conducted technical assistance trainings, authored policy reports, appeared on television and radio shows, and has been quoted by various media outlets such as The New York Times and Education Week. Her academic work can be found in Educational Studies, Early Childhood Research Quarterly, and Families in Society: The Journal of Contemporary Social Services. Barbara has served on numerous commissions and advisory groups, including Sesame Street Workshop’s Trauma Initiative and the National Commission on Children and Disasters education group. She received her Bachelor’s degree summa cum laude in Political Science from the University of Michigan.

Patricia Julianelle: Patricia Julianelle is an attorney and legal consultant for state and local governments and non-profit organizations. She has over 20 years of experience defending children’s and youth’s rights, including advocating for youth in the education, juvenile justice, child welfare, and immigration systems. Patricia is an expert on education law and policy, including the rights of children experiencing homelessness, students with disabilities and undocumented immigrants. She has worked with the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY), the National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty (NLCHP), the National Disabilities Rights Network (NDRN), Washington State’s Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI), and the American Bar Association, among other organizations.

Patricia’s skills include: leading trainings for state and local educational agencies, attorneys and non-profit organizations; convening powerful local, inter-agency task forces on youth homelessness; providing targeted technical assistance to state departments of education and local educational agencies; and drafting federal and state legislation to turn the wisdom of practitioners and young people into law. She also produces training and awareness videos related to family and youth homelessness. Her work has been published in academic and practice journals, including the Children’s Legal Rights Journal, Seattle Journal of Social Justice, Journal of Poverty Law & Policy, and Inquiry & Analysis, as well as publications of the American Bar Association, California Research Bureau and U.S. Department of Education. Patricia has taught high school and law school. Patricia graduated from Yale University and received her J.D. summa cum laude from Lewis & Clark Law School. She taught high school in the US and law school in Chile, where she met her wife and continues to reside part-time.


Davenport Grand, Spokane WA
333 W Spokane Falls Blvd Spokane WA 99201


  • Wed, October 3 2018 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
    Check-In: 8:00 AM
    Cedar Ballroom


Event # 82362

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Registration Ends
Thursday Sep 27, 2018 11:59 PM

Registration is now closed.
Professional Hours
Clock Hour Number: SPE0003
5.50 Clock Hours