What is Giving Compass?
We connect donors to learning resources and ways to support community-led solutions. Learn more about us.
Giving Compass' Take:
• More U.S. school districts are addressing high rates of absenteeism by first addressing county poverty and provide wrap-around services for students that could benefit from them.
• How can donors offer financing or support for extra programs in these counties? What are the solutions that will help them address the root of county poverty?
• Learn more about schools that are embracing wrap-around services.
A West Virginia coal county is trying to address its high rates of absenteeism by first addressing the community's high levels of poverty, The Washington Post reports.
McDowell County, the poorest county in the nation's poorest state, is trying to meet the needs of its student population by providing everything from on-site healthcare and counseling professionals (who would otherwise be a two-hour drive away) to lip balm for long bus waits in cold weather.
Because students who struggle with housing and food insecurity are less likely to learn, educators are working with community partners and state leaders to address the underlying barriers keeping students from the classroom. With schools educating a larger percentage of students from low-income backgrounds, more districts are also embracing wraparound services as a means of removing barriers for students who face poverty and serving the "whole child."
Union Public Schools in Tulsa, Oklahoma, for example, partnered with community groups and businesses to provide mental health, nutrition and early childhood education options. The district also operates a community school village seven days a week that includes a community garden, kitchen and medical center.
Los Angeles Unified School District runs a community school that builds relationships with professional partners who work to guide students towards careers they may not have otherwise considered. Many students at the school will be their family’s first high school graduate.
Finding funds for these programs is always challenging, but some state lawmakers recognize the need for help and have a hand in the success of these services.
Read the full article about providing wraparound services for students by Shawna De La Rosa at Education Dive.