Amanda Brings a Great Perspective to CIS

When it comes to helping students develop to their potential, Amanda has a great perspective.  Amanda is a Communities In Schools (CIS) Behavior Support Specialist at Mancelona Elementary School.  “The CIS staff is like the foundation of a house,” she said. “We can do anything the students or families need to hold everything together. We can give extra support with academics, behavior, referrals for doctors, heating needs, attendance support, clothing needs and anything we can help with.”

Amanda started in her CIS role a year ago. “I work with a lot of different students for a lot of different reasons,” she said. “I first build a relationship with a student. I find out what their needs are. It could be they need scheduled breaks, check-ins, calming strategies, an adult they can trust, behavior chart or reward systems.”

She has been working with kids for 20 years, starting when she and her sister opened a daycare right after high school for five years. She has also been a substitute assistant at Mancelona Elementary School and worked for the Traverse Bay Intermediate School District in Traverse City.  “I loved what I was doing, as behavior has always been a passion of mine, but I missed the students at Mancelona,” she said. “So I was excited to join CIS and get back.”

Amanda has two children, 17-year-old Tyler and 15-year-old Emily. They are both sports oriented with Tyler racing Snocross and Motocross and Emily playing travel softball. They inherited their love for competition from their mom, who played softball, basketball and volleyball during her high school days in Bellaire.   “I grew up in Bellaire and moved to Mancelona 17 years ago,” she said. “My family all live within 25 minutes of each other and I am very much a family oriented person.”