Atty. Debra Faye Williams-Robbins-—first director of FWCS Family and Community Engagement Center

| August 4, 2016
Madeline Marcelia Garvin

Madeline Marcelia Garvin

By Madeline Marcelia Garvin

FWCS Family and Community Engagement Center (FACE) officially opened in June, under the leadership of Atty. Debra Faye Williams-Robbins. Thus, I decided to drop in at the former Construction Trades Building, which is now the recently renovated Center at 230 East Douglas Street, to have some face time with Debra Faye, and I am glad I did. Debra greeted me very warmly and invited me into her education friendly office. Although I am four years older than Debra, I heard about Debra’s prowess when she was a young student at the old Hanna Elementary School because she was a student in my mom’s classroom. Yes, I saw those early grade school papers, when Debra was just beginning to express herself; something she now does even more as a servant-leader in FWCS and the Director of Music at Pilgrim Baptist Church.

Atty. Debra Faye Williams-Robbins

Atty. Debra Faye Williams-Robbins

Debra’s FWCS educational journey commenced at Hanna Elementary School and continued thru Weisser Park Junior High and Northrop High School before she went on to obtain her B.A. from Earlham College, M.A. from IPFW, law degree from Cooley Law School and Education Specialist Degree from Ball State University. Throughout her professional career, Williams-Robbins has served FWCS in the following capacities as: an elementary teacher at Arlington Elementary School, a counselor at Miami Middle School, a Title One resource teacher, a principal at Arlington Elementary School, and an Area Administrator for FWCS high schools. Thus, Williams-Robbins has worn many hats and has transitioned to many leadership positions.

As a 21st century graduate of Leadership Fort Wayne, she is even more prepared to direct this newly established facility as a well-informed servant-leader. Williams-Robbins is well-equipped  to not only manage the college and career ready initiatives; intervention programs that will hopefully reduce the disproportionate number of minority students who have disciplinary problems; but also to assist with enlightening students about various scholarship programs, need based and otherwise.

Being the newly appointed Director of FACE, Williams-Robbins will be the individual responsible for the implementation of the Center’s support services that are designed to assist students and families. Essentially, she will coordinate the programmatic thrusts that will address, according to its literature, the health, wellness and educational needs of children, youth and families in FWCS. To aid and enhance the educational experiences of those within FWCS, this facility will house services that address: enrollment, placement and lottery; connection with community partners; agencies and sources to provide “wrap-around” services for students and families, and community programs; such as, Study Connection; parenting support; pre-K-12 alternative programming; college and career readiness; personalized education; athletics and an on-site health clinic, which will address school related immunizations, physicals; vision and hearing screenings  in addition to referral services.

As if this is not enough, Atty. Debra Faye Williams-Robbins is also the Director of Music at Pilgrim Baptist Church. Therefore, I wanted to view her in this environ. So, after leaving my service at First Wayne Street United Methodist Church, I meandered over to Pilgrim Baptist because Debra, who has played piano since five, told me her service would just be commencing when mine was dismissing. Though this made for a lengthy Sunday, it was enjoyable because I was able to witness Debra as the Musical Director transition from one musical style to another rendering such numbers as: Pass Me Not Oh Gentle Savior, To Me It’s So Wonderful, We Are Soldiers in the Army, Amazing Grace and Jesus Keep Me Near the Cross. Even in her church, Williams-Robbins wears several hats directing the music for the Men’s Chorus and the Combined Choirs. If she directs the programs with FWCS as well as she directs the church choirs, everyone will be off to a successful start.

Nevertheless, that which is most advantageous is the aforementioned programs are now under one umbrella in a facility which is centrally located. And, this should make it easier for new enrollees and those new to the area to address all that is involved in one vicinity. The Family and Community Engagement Center’s hours of operation are Monday through Friday 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., with extended hours until 7 p.m., Wednesday.

Remember: School begins Monday, Aug. 15 and if you still have not registered, you will need the student’s birth certificate; immunization record, a list of schools previously attended, two official proofs of residence and a photo ID.

With this in mind, remember to stop by the friendly office of Atty. Debra Faye Williams-Robbins, who will be happy to assist you with all of your community and enrollment concerns.


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Category: Community, Education, Features, People

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Frost Illustrated is Fort Wayne's oldest weekly newspaper. Your Independent Voice in the Community, featuring news & views of African Americans since 1968.

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