2020–2021 McKay School Theme

“And the Lord called his people Zion, because they were of one heart and one mind, and dwelt in righteousness; and there was no poor among them.”
—Moses 7:18


Message From the Dean's Office

"With February's focus on love, Mary Anne Prater tells a story in which she learns the real meaning of "love life" and shares a diversity statement highlighting our commitment at the McKay School to loving all people at all times.

Faculty Accomplishments

Our faculty has been hard at work! For a bit of light reading, check out your colleagues' recent publications. Don't forget to keep sending in your accomplishments; we love to share them!


In The News

BYU's award-winning research on improving autism diagnoses has been receiving good media attention. Three major studies have been published thanks to Autism Connect, BYU's interdisciplinary research group. They have worked to refine the accuracy and timeliness of autism diagnoses.

Terisa Gabrielsen (CPSE) and her colleagues researched the unique mental health struggles of women with undiagnosed autism.

In addition, they have also found that the method for detecting autism in children is being administered inconsistently.


With so much to celebrate throughout the month of February, we wanted to specifically highlight the celebration of Black history that happens all month long. We would like to highlight a compilation of BYU's resources and tools that highlight racial equity. In addition, the Center for Racial Justice in Education has put together some resources for educators and families to learn more about creating racially inclusive classrooms.

Join us February 3–5 for the Marjorie Pay Hinckley lectures on the effects of home school on children and adolescents as well as how to navigate work and family life in the twenty-first century. The lectures will feature presentations from Toby Parcel, PhD, professor emerita of sociology at North Carolina State University.

The McKay School's Project SEEL is excited to announce its first webinar of 2021! Join us on Zoom February 5 from 4–5 p.m. (MST) with Barbara Culatta. She will discuss how to ensure that struggling early readers experience success.

This semester, the McKay School is hosting informal lunchtime sessions for all faculty and staff following three devotional speakers. These lunchtime discussions will provide those in attendance with the opportunity to come together on Zoom and share their thoughts and insights from the devotional. All discussions will take place at noon (MST).

This month's lunchtime discussion is on February 9 following Elder Jose A. Teixiera's devotional. Check out the flyer for additional Zoom information or join the meeting.

Meeting ID: 919 9189 340
Passcode: 402886

The annual conference of the Utah Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters will be held virtually on March 20. If you are interested in sharing your work with colleagues from Utah, submit a proposal for an oral or poster presentation by February 19.

Conference presenters will also be invited to share manuscripts for publication in the Journal of the Utah Academy of Sciences, Arts, and Letters. Papers will be eligible for a cash award for "Best Paper" from each division.

The 34th BYU Symposium on Books for Young Readers is coming to Zoom on February 20 and February 27! Come hear from award-winning authors and illustrators Kelly Barnhill, Yuyi Morales, and Jewell Parker Rhodes during this two-Saturday event! All full-time faculty and staff can join for free using BYU Benefits. Register here!

BYU has recently updated their privacy standard for personal information regarding public-facing employee directories and is committed to protecting privacy of personal information within its control. Learn more about the options for having your work contact information online and check out other privacy notices and guidelines at BYU.

The Leaders Associates program met virtually this year with all senior leaders of the BYU-Public School Partnership. The program allows leadership to discuss important issues in education, focusing on the intersection of public and higher education in order to help with the preparation of teachers.

Watch the recording of their last meeting.
Passcode: 1fqF@X%d

The BYU ARTS Partnership kept busy in 2020, providing new integrated technology curricula surrounding the arts and inclusion. Here are some of the things they've been up to:

Members of the leadership team developed a website providing information across six art forms (dance, drama, literary arts, visual arts, media arts, music) to help teachers integrate arts into their instruction. This resource was invaluable during 2020.

The BYU ARTS Partnership also started a new podcast series—Artful Teaching—which works to bring teachers out of isolation and into the conversation. Their first series focuses specifically on teaching in a pandemic.

And, in the last few months, BYU ARTS Partnership has been working towards creating the Native American Curriculum Initiative which will help foster culturally responsible classrooms.

This Month In History

In February 1870, Utah became one of the first states in the United States where women were able to vote. Last year marked 150 years since that paramount law was passed! February has a litany of historical moments: the Salem Witch Trials began in 1692, Pluto was discovered in 1930, and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was released as Disney's first animated movie in 1938.

Employee Spotlight

Meet Emily Johns, the McKay School's newest academic advisor! She replaced Kelly Newbold in December 2020. We're excited to have her here with us at the McKay School and wish her the best of luck!

Giveaway Winners


Congrats to Stacey Kratz (McKay PR Team) for being this month's giveaway winner. She is currently enjoying a sparkly surprise as a way to end the first month of the year!


February Giveaway

Try out our love song crossword puzzle for a chance to win a lovely prize this February! Send a picture of your completed crossword puzzle to mckayprteam@byu.edu.

We are all looking to update our Valentine's Day playlists! Send in your favorite love song to mckayprteam@byu.edu.


February 2 | Devotional: L. Todd Budge, Presiding Bishopric
February 9 | Devotional: Jose A. Teixeira, Presidency of the Seventy
February 9 | Lunchtime Discussions
February 14 | Valentine's Day
February 15 | Presidents' Day
February 16 | Monday Instruction
February 19 | 15th Annual Utah Conference on Undergraduate Research
February 23 | Forum: Dambisa Moyo, Macroeconomist
See the Full Calendar