The San Jose Schools that make up the San Jose Unified School District have wide range of needs to provide for. One of the most difficult to get a handle on has always been the” at-risk” teen population, with a tendency to drop-out of the system completely. As San Jose Schools seek the best approaches to these problems, administrators are casting a wide net in their search for solutions. Among the resources that the San Jose Schools are tapping are parents, support staff and government funding.
A CLEAN SCHOOL IS A HAPPY SCHOOL
Ask any teacher who the most important person in a San Jose School is, and she is likely to tell you it’s the custodian. Teachers have long recognized that the support staff, like food service employees, office staff, and maintenance workers, is critical to a well-run school. State Superintendent Jack O’Connell acknowledged that when he introduced the California State Service Award Program. San Jose Schools’ support staff will be eligible for these awards based on “outstanding contributions” to their school system. Teachers in the San Jose Schools encourage the program because of the difference a strong support staff can have on the teacher’s ease in doing his or her job. Other San Jose Schools’ Initiatives focus on other essential partners in education, the parents.
PARENTS ARE TEACHERS TOO
Part of the strategy of San Joes Schools is to get everyone on the same team. San Jose Schools held an annual parent education conference in March of this year. The San Jose Unified’s Office of Parent Education and Involvement & Title I held the day long informational meeting. The focus of the program is to teach parents specific methods to foster success of their San Jose Schools’ students. The conference provided speakers and topics on subjects such as the Importance of Math and Science and Emotional Health and Wellness. San Jose Schools collaborated with organizations including The National Hispanic University and Stanford University.
AND MONEY DOESN’T HURT
San Jose Schools will also benefit indirectly from a $275,000 planning grant received by the Greater San Jose Alternative Education Collaborative. The Youth Transition Funders Group, the Initiative to Support Struggling Students, and Out-of-School Youth have awarded the grants to 5 large cities considered leaders in their efforts to help at-risk youth. According to Mayor Ron Gonzales, the San Jose Schools see reaching out-of-school youth as a priority that will benefits the entire city. Collaborating with San Jose Schools on this initiative are the United Way Silicon Valley and the City of San Jose BEST Program. The goal is to reconnect drop-outs with San Jose Schools or other educational alternatives, and to provide choices to keep at-risk students in an educational environment.
Patricia Hawke is a staff writer for Schools K-12, providing free, in-depth reports on all U. S. public and private K-12 schools.
For more information please visit San Jose Schools