Common reasons for children not attending school include family responsibilities, transportation issues, common illnesses, behavioral issues and/or suspensions. We have two school-based ministries, Stars and Thrive by Five, to address these reasons. Through these programs, there is a significant decrease in office referrals and behavioral issues. And, we have seen an increase in parental involvement in school meetings and events. These improvements have a positive ripple effect on the entire family and ultimately, the entire community. By providing this schoolbased support we’re able to infuse hope and healing in youth and families in under-resourced areas of our city that arguably have the most to gain from the love, support and encouragement we have to offer.
What can we do to eliminate
barriers for children and families
in and out of the classroom?
Stars is one of the ways we can elimate barriers. Stars has a team of dedicated connectors who work one-on-one with children and their families to provide diverse support and services to keep kids in school and ready to learn.
A partnership with Shelby County Schools and Achievement School District (ASD), Stars continually racks up remarkable successes. With a countywide, acceptable level of attendance rate at near 57%, students served in Stars have an overall attendance rates of 90%. There is nearly a 10% growth gains in literacy and proficiency in math, science, and related subjects.
We know from experience that many times, working with the child while supporting the parents is the best place to start. By providing this school-based support we’re able to infuse hope and healing in youth and families in under-resourced areas of our city that arguably have the most to gain from the love, support and encouragement we have to offer.
Thrive By Five is another way to support children and families. Thrive by Five understands parents are the first and most important teachers for their children, so the mission of our program is to strengthen families with young children by promoting brain and language development leading to kindergarten readiness. Agape Connectors provide tools and resources to ensure children are ready to begin school. Our program, funded by the Urban Child Institute, works alongside University of Memphis to offer LENA Start and Nurturing Parenting classes along with home-based visitation to improve early communication between parent and child for residents .
Read High Ground’s news article on this collaborative partnership.
Read The Commercial Appeal’s article on our first Thrive by Five graduating class.
We are proud to serve in the following 17 schools:
Hickory Hill: Hickory Ridge Elementary, Sheffield Elementary, Winridge Elementary, Hickory
Ridge Middle, American Way Middle, Wooddale High, Sheffield High
Frayser: Frayser Elementary, Corning Elementary, Georgian Hills Elementary, Whitney Elementary, Westside Middle, MLK College Prep
Whitehaven: Robert R. Church Elementary, A. Maceo Walker Middle, Hillcrest High