Every child deserves an equal start at school
…But inequity exists
What is the problem?
- 1 in 5 children live in poverty.
- For the past 60 years, 70% of low-income children enter school 18 to 24 months behind.
- Most do not catch up. Eric Hunushek, Educational Economist, Stanford University, states, ” “The average performance of the lowest income students in the United States lags about three to four years behind … an achievement gap that has remained constant for more than four decades.”
- Poor academic performances lead to lower lifetime earnings and poorer health
Why work on learning before school?
Why work with parents?
- Evidence show that the parent-child relationship and the home environment are the most influential factors in shaping a child’s development
- This initial involvement carries over to involvement with their child’s school journey
- Parent involvement leads to improved academic outcomes
- Parents spend more time with their child, especially for children under the age of 6
How does our program work?
Our program is free for low-income families with children age 2–5 in San Mateo County.
Learning boxes containing learning activities and books are brought to the family’s home every 3 weeks.
Training and support is provided to our families throughout the three years they are with us.
We provide a book a week for each child in our program. We do this because it has been shown that “the more words that are in a child’s language world, the more words they will learn, …” and books are a great way to expose a child to different words normally in the home.
And it Works!
For the past 3 years, we have evaluated our graduates using a play-based assessment and the work that the parents have done with their child in their home shows. All were kindergarten ready. Although there is no national or state standard, many schools in our county uses the Bridgance Assessment. Here are some of the skills they look for:
Their first and last name and age
Primary and Secondary Colors
Ability to draw shapes
Build a tower of 10 blocks
Identifies upper & lowercase letters
Sort objects by color, size, shape
Verbal fluency and articulation