Valerie Kirk

Brands are built, products are sold, customers remain engaged, and employees stay motivated because of great corporate storytelling and campaigns that touch people on a personal level. That is what I do. I am an experienced corporate marketing communications writer specializing in content marketing, brand messaging, and employee engagement. 

Suicide warning signs for kids and where to go for help – Connections Academy

The statistics are alarming and the stories heartbreaking. Suicide is the third leading cause of death for people ages 15–24, and the second leading cause of death for kids ages 10–14. In 2021, emergency departments across the country noted a sharp rise in 12-to-17-year-olds needing treatment for suicidal actions. A survey from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 1 in 5 said they’d thought about suicide. Our children are facing a mental health crisis, with more than a thir

Good Enough Is Not Okay: Agencies Need a Holistic Approach to Cybersecurity

Against the backdrop of a significant rise in cyberattacks against the Federal government and private sector organizations, President Biden has made cybersecurity a critical focus of his administration. His Executive Order on Improving the Nation’s Cybersecurity (EO 14028) gives technology teams marching orders with aggressive deadlines for securing Federal networks, systems, and endpoints. “With CIOs under pressure to meet the deadlines, technology teams may rush to implement disparate technol

Do You Know Who is Responsible for Disaster Recovery in the Cloud? (Hint: It’s Not Your Cloud Provider)

Since the release of the Cloud First mandate in 2011, the Federal government has been pushing agencies to modernize legacy technology and migrate to the cloud. While Cloud First evolved into Cloud Smart, agencies have historically taken a measured approach to cloud migration. On the most recent FITARA scorecard, only three agencies scored an A in the Modernizing Government Technology category. Eleven agencies scored a C or below. Building backup and effective disaster recovery solutions in an o

A Student’s Guide to Getting Started with Online School – Connections Academy®

School is so much more than academics. The student’s experience at school plays a significant role in their success and overall well-being. Negative experiences, such as bullying, not feeling challenged enough, or falling behind with no path to catch up, leads to student’s who tune out and disengage from school, hurting them academically and leading to mental health issues, including depression and anxiety. It’s estimated that over 15% of students miss one or more days of school due to bullying.

Virtual Learning and Working Parents: 5 Tips to Make It Work – Connections Academy®

Virtual school offers many benefits for K–12 students, including flexible scheduling, personalized learning, and a safe learning environment. For working parents, those benefits may seem out of reach for their students as they worry about balancing job responsibilities with online school. How do working parents manage virtual school? Don’t worry—you’ve got this! Finding success in online school requires balance, patience, and commitment for all types of families. And while each family has to fin

4 Ways to Teach Kids Kindness and Help Save the World

As parents, we all have secret dreams about the success our children will have in their future. our dreams for them are typically focused on the kind of success that shines a spotlight on their gifted achievements. But there are many ways to lead a successful life that aren’t tied directly to notable achievements. Helping others and being empathetic to those in need, being kind to people, and volunteering are examples of how our children can find a different kind of success—and be a positive force of change in the world.

10 Ways Your Student Can Learn About Black History

February is Black History Month, a time to celebrate the impact of African American heritage, culture, and achievement in our country. While most K–12 schools incorporate Black history activities into their curriculum, Black History Month offers a wonderful opportunity to extend your child’s learning at home or enhance your homeschool curriculum. Here are 10 ways your student can learn about Black history and culture. You don’t have to wait until February—these activities and resources can be used throughout the year!

5 Summer Camp Alternatives for Your Kids

Just when you started narrowing down summer camp ideas for your kids—or if you were ahead of the game, you had already made a down payment and marked your calendar—the COVID-19 pandemic hit the nation and summer programs were cancelled. So now we’re left to figure out how to give our kids the benefits of the summer camp experience in new ways. With kids dealing with several months of learning at home and social distancing, they are ready to get out in the warmer weather to enjoy their summer an

How to Teach Your Teen to Cook Real Meals

How many times has your teen asked you, “What’s for dinner?” Probably several times this week alone. Teens are constantly hungry and are usually foraging through the pantry for something to tide them over until it’s time for dinner. Wouldn’t you love to ask them, “What’s for dinner?” Then teach your teen to cook a real meal! While teens may know how to boil water to make a box of mac & cheese or pop a bag of popcorn in the microwave, they are just a few short years away from becoming independen
Load More Articles