Good Things Come In Threes
Good Things Come In Threes
Supporting education is our first priority. Improving educational preparedness, outcomes, and career and college readiness, will benefit the whole community. Below is a brief update on the success so far with the Schools of Excellence Initiative and an introduction to the two additional Initiatives for which we are also fundraising.
We recently hosted the Chamber After Hours networking event and introduced the Centralia Community Foundation and our 3 initiatives to many in the community.
Schools of Excellence Update
With this Schools of Excellence (SoE) Initiative, we at CCF are committed to achieving success in enhancing education and improving college and career readiness. The SoE Initiative was our first at CCF, and we were awarded a $2 million dollar grant by TransAlta Transition Grants. To date we have accomplished a great deal, and we are on target for achieving a sustainable process and program of professional teacher development for Centralia Schools, resulting in better classroom experiences for all students.
In our first 18 months of the SOE initiative we have accomplished the following:
- Conducted a needs assessment in the Centralia School District led by The BERC Group
- Established the Career & College Readiness Committee
- Established Powerful Teaching & Learning (The Learning Walks)
- Purchased Naviance career and college readiness software
- Purchased 275 Chromebooks
- Enhanced partnerships with Centralia College for career and college readiness
- Added two college and career counselors at middle and high schools; Lisa Wilson
and Amy Hendrickson
- We have facilitated the addition of new staff person, Jodi Schaefer as the Teaching and Learning Facilitator for the District; she will be working alongside The BERC Group to learn how to plan, organize, and facilitate all aspects of their support so we have a sustainable program of professional development and productive communications inside the District and the schools
- We have created a set of key performance indicators to track progress on student outcomes over time, and help guide the work moving forward
Career Pathways Initiative
Funding was awarded to Centralia College providing for the creation of a mobile training lab that focuses on career and technical education. The mobile lab will be outfitted with industry standard training equipment as well as simulators. This mobile lab will be sent out to high schools and middle schools within Centralia College’s service district to help students see what career opportunities exist locally in the industrial trades.
Lewis County has a work force that is seriously under-qualified relevant to our regional industries and future. Our goal with the Career Pathways Initiative is to expand on the work of Centralia College’s mobile lab. By supporting this mobile lab, we will further develop partnerships with the trades industries that are not currently represented, and expand the content and awareness of career opportunities that are available regionally. We not only see these partnerships creating new content, but possibly additional curriculum for the education sector.
Furthermore we would like to leverage our Career Pathways Initiative to share this concept with everyone, not just students, in our community. This could potentially be a parent of a student who is in need of obtaining skills and training in order to earn a family wage, or someone looking to obtain skills that will allow them to enter into a new career for their future.
Early Learning Initiative
Lewis County ranked 33% lower than others in the State on Kindergarten Readiness with a score of 30.7% compared to 45.7% statewide. This number correlates to roughly the number of kids living in poverty or where early learning is not assessible in Lewis County. Our commitment to quality education cannot be fully realized until we support and help expand early learning opportunities. There are an estimated 700+ underserved children in Lewis County. We have established partnerships with many foundations and organizations who share a common interest in enhancing early learning opportunities in our community: United Way of Lewis County, Discover! Children’s Museum, Centralia College, and several others.
The Foundation is in Phase One of our initiative. We are currently partnering with United Way of Lewis County for a new early learning center. It is slated to be in the old Logan School in Centralia. We are in a feasibility study for the property and gifting plans with the School District are underway. When renovations or rebuilding are completed, it will accommodate 170 pre-school children. We hope to accomplish this within the next two years and we look to expand with additional services in the future.
You can learn more about our initiatives by contacting our Board Members in charge of these initiatives directly.