Foundation 65 has announced more than $180,000 in grants to fund literacy and arts programming for District 65 students this school year.

A new initiative this year is the Child-Parent Center Expansion, a program designed to provide intensive educational and family-support services for pre-K to third-grade children in low-income families and high-poverty neighborhoods.

The goal of the program is to promote school readiness, parent involvement and early school achievement which have long-term positive effects on achievement, graduation and career success.

The Child Parent Center program is a collaborative effort between District 65, the University of Minnesota Department of Education, as well as a number of local organizations including Foundation 65.

In addition four local organizations have received funding for one-year grants — The Mary and Leigh Block Museum, Striding Lion, Music Institute of Chicago and the Musical Offering.

These groups will provide arts and literacy opportunities for students.

Foundation 65 will also continue to support for the following ongoing programs:

Advancing Literacy for All
The purpose of this project is to increase content literacy through improved instruction and a greater array of materials related to science and social studies topics. Ultimately, the goal is to increase students’ ability to read and understand complex nonfiction text and to better prepare students for the challenge of
successful learning in high school. Teacher professional development for 4th-8th grade science and social studies teachers is a critical component of the program.

Family Author Experience
This program brings a selected children’s author to D65 schools and creates a shared family, school-wide and community experience. By reading works from the same author and participating in related school-based activities, the entire school community is united in a unique experience of inquiry and creativity. Past authors have included Jack Gantos, Nikki Grimes and Nic Bishop. This year, the program will be hosted at Dawes, Dewey, Oakton, Washington and Willard Schools

Kindergarten Literacy Education at Play
This program truly brings learning alive for our youngest students. An outreach early literacy program developed by the LEAP team at Evanston Public Library, Kindergarten LEAP gives students the opportunity to learn important literacy and social interaction skills through innovative play scenarios. The program supports early literacy skills and is designed to encourage creative thinking so that students of all levels can learn, participate and ultimately, benefit.

Kindergarten Library Tours
This partnership with the Evanston Public Library provides funding for all District 65 Kindergarteners to visit the Evanston Public Library and get a library card. This program introduces and orients emergent readers to the Library and its staff to establish comfort and familiarity with all the Library has to offer.

Summer Reading Program
This program, led by D65 Reading Recovery teacher Linda Shusterman, supports summer reading growth by providing books to first grade students who have received supplementary reading support in first grade. By keeping these emergent readers engaged in reading over the summer, they are able to maintain the reading growth they had attained during the school year.

Since 2003, Foundation 65 has invested over $1,000,000 in projects and programs making an impact at every school in the District.

Foundation 65 is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that raises and grants funds for projects that expand, enrich, and complement educational opportunities for the students, staff, and community in Evanston-Skokie District 65. Foundation 65 is an independent operating foundation with its own volunteer board and funds.

More information about Foundation 65, is available online.

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