For years, the work of our local collaboration has been recognized by the national Campaign for Grade Level Reading. This work doesn’t start and end in third grade. We need to give kids a great start by helping support parents, delivering engaging out of school experiences, utilizing proven intervention strategies, and equipping community members with tools to address issues of impact. We also recognize the vital nature of community support in volunteering for mentoring programs and summer learning.
COMMUNITY IMPACT GOAL:
Decrease the achievement gap by reaching 30% more underserved learners by 2025.
- 27.2% of Story County kindergarten students were not proficient in reading in SY18-19 (Iowa Department of Education)
- 26.2% of Story County 3rd graders were not reading proficiently in SY18-19 (Iowa Department of Education, ISASP)
*Data from 2019 or most recent year available. While these indicators are not the only ways to assess education in our community, these are data points that illustrate that there is a need in our goal area.
High quality early childhood education / We will increase access to underserved children by providing sliding fee scales and encouraging a focus on equity.
Parenting knowledge and skills / We will support parents in their role of being their kids’ first teachers.
Grade level reading supports / We will increase access for out-of-school learning and proven intervention strategies.
Community-based education and awareness / We will educate community members on issues of impact and empower them with tools to take action.
- 225 children from underserved populations were enrolled in high-quality early childhood programs supported by United Way.
- More than 663 youth K-8 from underserved populations were provided with summer enrichment, which means access to quality and engaging out-of-school opportunities, that reinforce and enhance academic and social/emotional learning.
- 199 of surveyed families reported an increase in their parenting knowledge and skills, representing 94% of those surveyed.
- 549 children who participated in early childhood and out-of-school programming improved or maintained their reading level, representing 97% of those assessed.
- 3,996 of surveyed participants in community-based education programs reported having a better understanding than before, representing 94% of those surveyed.
Baseline from FY 2018-19. These performances measures are part of a comprehensive strategy map. They show a range of work, and are reported on by a number of different funded programs. To view our full strategy map and community impact plan, visit www.uwstory.org/impact.
Result 1: Children enter school developmentally on track
Result 2: Children exit third grade reading at grade level
Result 3: Learners develop the skills needed for life and career, including but not limited to civic literacy, employability skills, financial literacy, and health literacy
Our work in Education
Iowa Reading Corps
United Way of Story County invests in AmeriCorps members to be recruited and trained to implement the Iowa Reading Corps program in 8 elementary schools. AmeriCorps members are delivering research-based tutoring and literacy interventions to struggling readers in kindergarten through 3rd grade at Kate Mitchell, Fellows, Sawyer, St. Cecilia, Gilbert Intermediate, Ballard East, Nevada Central, and Roland-Story. Learn more here...
Story County Reads
United Way of Story County recognizes the importance of ensuring all youth in our communities have the building blocks they need to establish success with education. Story County Reads is a multi-sector coalition which brings together partner agencies and community stakeholders with the goals that all youth in Story County are ready for school and can read at or above grade level by the end of third grade. We are a part of the National Campaign for Grade Level Reading and follow the model of the national work in four priority areas:
- School readiness
- Out of School Learning
- Grade level reading
United Way of Story County is the backbone and lead agency for Story County Reads. Learn more about Story County Reads.
Out of School Learning
Learning loss occurs during the months when students are not in attendance in school. This is most significant in June through August, but the negative affects of learning loss can be experienced throughout the school year. United Way of Story County brings together multiple organizations to collaboratively serve students with community and school-based programs. These programs fit together to create a portfolio of supports addressing the unique and diverse needs of our youth, ensuring the opportunity to achieve academic goals. Learn more here.