“Kids Standard Publication is a group of parents, students, teachers, and volunteers with the staff and Board of Directors at the core of its leadership. We have a group of highly experienced and passionate members at the Board of Directors, who are committed to continuous improvements and success of the organization’s activities.
Kids Standard Publication, was launched in Michigan in 2010, by Maggie Razdar who is experienced running a business, personal and professional coaching and Chemical Engineer, mom, wife, and someone who is passionate about education and youth. The community of educators and parents joined Kids Standard’s Board to team up with their unique talents to assist youth with resources for their present lives and for permanent success. Kids Standard is dedicated to youth education and development. Everyone in the executive board serves multiple roles handling duties. Board members have roots in the community and are energized by the activities that they carry out to benefit children and youth.
Kids Standard also has a strong partnership with local Universities, this partnership brings many positions and internships for college students.
Kids Standard’s first goal was working with kids in reading and writing to showcase their voice and art in the monthly magazine. The organization added more programs to serve the needs of the community. The organization said ” We believe in whole child concept”, meaning to be successful academically it will also require the overall wellbeing of children.
Kids are the future. We need to inspire them to get them engaged in their learning so they Aspire! For that reason, Kids Standard added more programs to empower the whole development toward literacy.
After school literacy, writing and publishing program is a Year-Round program. We have a proven system that the students grow academically 70%. We stopped due to a lack of funding. I would like to work with the same students every year, because when we stop, they lose their study habits.
Kids Standard uses an authentic approach to improve k-12 Literacy. Kids Standard’s first goal is to work with kids in reading and writing and to showcase their voice and art in the monthly magazine. The organization added more programs to serve the needs of the communities. Our programs are Journalism k-12, COACHING, STEAM, MAKER PROJECTS, SUMMER CAMP, AND HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS PATHWAY FOR WORK AND COLLEGE. We work in many of Oakland County’s schools, with a focus on Pontiac Schools.
Our Goal: Circulate our magazine to every household, to encourage and enhance the talents of every young writer, and to serve as a valuable educational resource for kids, parents, and teachers”.
Maggie Razdar’s story:
Maggie Razdar, the founder and President of Kids Standard Publication, is passionate about inspiring children to succeed in areas of their interest.
When her two boys were in a middle school in Syracuse, New York, Razdar felt that many children started to lose touch with reading, writing, and researching, due to the obsessive influence of digital technology. To offset this influence, in 2009, she launched Kids Standard Publication, which quickly became very successful. In 2011, Razdar’s family moved to Clarkston, Michigan, where she began working with local schools to provide students with the opportunity to share their voices in her publication.
The first Michigan-based issue of the magazine was released in March of 2015, and it immediately received outstanding feedback from parents, teachers, students, and local professionals.
“Even more important than writing itself,” says Razdar, “is the process of doing research, learning, and thinking, which develops dispositions of a good writer.”
Maggie’s educational background includes a degree in Chemical Engineering from McGill University, Montreal, Canada. She also studied Metaphysical Science and holds several business and technical certifications.
Razdar is an active member of many local organizations. She also belongs to The National Association of Professional Women.
As an accomplished business owner, Maggie inspires hundreds of people with her great success. In 2000, she was recognized in ‘The Elite Who’s Who!’ and received ‘The Outstanding Female Business Owner’ award in recognition of her ability to help others achieve excellence and strong leadership skills.
Despite her professional achievement, Razdar’s greatest achievement is her two sons, who are currently students at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. They sparked her desire to establish this non-profit organization, which aims at improving the well-being and development of all children.
Arina Bokas’ story:
Arina Bokas, Ph.D., is the Editor and Vice President of Kids Standard Magazine. She is a faculty member in the department of English at Mott Community College, Flint, Michigan, where she has been teaching writing for the last 9 years.
She is the author of “Building Powerful Learning Environments: From Schools to Communities” – a book, focused on creating a new canvas for learning that incorporates multiple learning providers, including families and community-based organizations. She authored and co-authored dozens of education-related publications and presented at the Harvard University’s CASIE/Project Zero and many other conferences for educators nationally and internationally. She also serves on the Michigan PTA Nominating and Leadership Development Committee.
Bokas is a holder of multiple degrees and certifications: Ph.D. (Philology); M.A. (English); B.A. and M.A. (Russian Language, Literature, and History); M.S.A. Graduate Certificate (International Administration). In 2016, she received the Friend of Education award from the Michigan Education Association. In 2014, Michigan PTA recognized her with the Distinguished Service Award.
Bokas, who is also a mother of two children, became the editor of Kids Standard Magazine because, in her own words, “good written communication is likely the most critical 21st-century skill, no matter the field, and it is exactly what many children lack.
Recently, I encountered the disturbing statistic that merely 1% of America’s high school seniors can write a clear, persuasive paper. As a college English instructor, I can relate. In the Digital Era, when communication relies heavily on writing, everyone must be able to write clear and concise emails and to differentiate between platitudes and substance for his or her point of view to be heard and valued.
There’s no substitute for writing other than writing. Writing ignites thinking, touches hearts, promotes reflections and personal growth, nurtures relationships, and helps children become independent thinkers and learners.
As an educator and a parent, I would like to see parents and schools work together to create meaningful learning experiences for children. This starts with understanding and sharing.
I believe that Kids Standard provides an incredible meeting place for parents, educators, and children that, though writing, will help us to grow into a culture of thinking, collaboration, trust, integrity, and a shared responsibility for the world around us and everyone in it.”
Elizabeth Crenshaw – Vice President
I have always wanted to make the world a better place for the sake of the greater good, and I have always had a passion for giving back to the community. With my educational background in Engineering, Communications, and Health and Wellness, I am used to wearing many hats and knowing a little bit of everything which can go a long way. In the nonprofit sector, it is normal to juggle many tasks and assignments at once. Due to my background and life experiences, I have developed skill sets needed to reach and influence the youth. I can be a role model for the youth and can relate to the struggles they face since I understand the dynamic of the city.
As a Vice President of Kids Standard I am excited to be working with this group and the community of Youth!
I am also a Yoga Instructor in my own business called Yak Town Yoga.
Chelsea Glidden story
Chelsea is the Literacy and Volunteer Committee Director for Kids Standard Magazine. As a philanthropist, she has served wildlife sanctuaries and the Oakland County Zoological Authority Board. She has an interdisciplinary education, with an A.A. from Edison State and B.A. (Integrative Studies) from Oakland University, where she concentrated in pedagogy and creative writing.
Chelsea is T.E.F.L. certified to teach English to non-native speakers. She also mentors our students to develop their writing talents. She continues to teach in diverse settings because she believes, “knowledge is meant to be shared and discovered. We need more writers and readers.
Various obstacles and existing systems prevent education opportunities or leave students uninspired. Fundamental to my mission as a teacher is to help resurrect the universal human right. I enjoy breaking down communication barriers and love bringing about bold ideas.
Through writing we can effectively communicate ourselves and ultimately enhance our interactions with the world. Kids Standard is a valuable educational resource; transforming the community and students into accomplished leaders.
Regina started in education as a Teaching Assistant during her 4 1/2 years of undergraduate learning at Michigan State University. After the completion of her bachelor’s degree in Mathematics with a minor in Computer Science, Regina began teaching at Pontiac Northern High School as a math instructor for 9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th-grade students. Shortly after teaching at the secondary level, Regina was introduced to a marketing opportunity. Her journey began in Marketing and she has since had over 16 years of marketing experience with over 5 years of health care experience. She has not left her commitment to youth untouched. She currently volunteers in the youth department at her church to help mold and mentor youth to fulfill their purpose and destiny. She is currently is employed with Lourdes Senior Community as the Marketing and Sales Coordinator where she provides marketing exposure for the entire health care continuum consisting of Independent Living, Assisted Living, Memory Care, Skilled Nursing, Long-term care, and an Institute that is design to support the caregiver of seniors. Her love for education, children, and seniors has caused her to proactively incorporate programs and events that bring both seniors and children together on her beautiful lakefront senior community.
Regina brings creative thinking to Kid’s Standard that is needed to take the involved students into a unique atmosphere to promote creative writing with confidence. Writing is a form of expression that will not be ignored with Kid’s Standard, and Regina enjoys her involvement in a program that develops, critiques, and matures the writing styles of the students involved.
Sandra L. Ritter
Sandra is a lifelong educator with experience in school administration, curriculum planning, policy development, teaching, and coaching Teacher Candidates. She is a former Congressional District Administrative Assistant, Statewide Coordinator for the Michigan Adult Literacy Initiative, and Higher Education Consultant for the Michigan Department of Education.
As a former Oakland County Community College Trustee, she served on the Board of Trustees for 36 years. During her tenure, she was elected to serve on two national boards representing Community College concerns, the American Association of Community Colleges and Association of Community College Trustees, and was the recipient of many awards and honors, including the 1989 ACCT Ensign Award.
Currently, Sandra serves as an appointed member of the Senior Advisory Council, Independence Township Parks and Recreation & Seniors.
Education: BA (History) U of M; MA (History) U of D; postgraduate studies in Higher Education Administration, U of M; postgraduate studies in leadership, MSU.
Resides in Clarkston
Becoming involved with Kids Standard has allowed me to share my enthusiasm for helping to build a community of learners. KS activities are designed to motivate, activate, and celebrate students as valuable individuals that have a voice that must be heard while providing experiences that foster mutual respect.
As co-chair of the Pontiac and Oakland University College-Readiness Initiative. I work with Oakland County Literacy Council to support growth in reading and writing. My collaborative efforts promote writing, mentoring, and volunteering in participating school districts. My studies at Harvard University on Redesigning High Schools for Improved Instruction and Systemic learning have proven to be an influence on student contributions in writing and publishing. I work diligently to preserve and share common goals for sustainability in the future of our children through Kids Standard Magazine initiatives. I am committed to engaging in the growth of Kids Standard Magazine programs and projects