This week I continue my four-part series highlighting our 13 Regional Achievement Collaboratives (RAC). RACs are designed to bring cross-sector partners together to develop a shared, local vision for supporting students and families. Below are examples from three more RACs illustrating the impact of cross-sector collaboration on the opportunities provided for students.
The Klamath Promise RAC is a multi-sector partnership focused on unifying the community to collectively improve graduation rates and prepare youth for their future. In a combined effort between Citizens for Safe Schools (CFSS), the Juvenile Department’s Youth Accountability Team (YAT) program, and Lutheran Community Services (LCS), the community is tackling chronic absenteeism in the local schools. CFSS and YAT Staff members work to form relationships with the students identified as needing encouragement to stay in school. Staff members continually work with school staff to gather attendance data and check in with students to review progress, praise improvement or, where warranted, report back on possible citation into court. Together, this group of partners has connected with 79 youth and their families, and to date, 54 of these youth have shown improved attendance rates, and many have been connected with community service supports.
The College and Career Ready RAC in Tillamook County is working to establish a career- and college-going culture, support high academic expectations, and create avenues for student engagement. Specifically, they are working to ensure that every student graduates high school having taken at least one college-level course and/or have had career training opportunities. The RAC promotes several initiatives with partners serving students at key transitions. For example, the RAC has implemented programming designed to expand students’ educational opportunities by linking high schools with local colleges, enabling students to earn college credits free of charge with on-site instruction provided at the high school.
The Mid-Valley Mid-Coast RAC serves Linn, Benton, and Lincoln counties and represents partners from across the learning continuum emphasizing school- and community-wide support for students struggling around educational transition points (e.g., middle-to-high school transition) especially with mathematics. In a recent effort to improve student transitions related to mathematics, student teachers in local teaching programs have worked to align learning outcomes across three institutions of higher education in their region. The collaborative was recently awarded a prestigious grant from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching to continue local efforts to improve mathematics curriculum and instruction. A further example of the region's commitment is exemplified by a recent activity of the Albany City Council, which voted to give RAC partner Linn-Benton Community College (LBCC) $2.9 million to help expand career technical programs to produce the skilled workforce to fill an estimated 500+ new skilled manufacturing jobs in the region over the next 3-5 years.
Thank you to each of these extraordinary collaborations for the work that you are doing to connect the dots for our students. Together, you are paving a powerful pathway forward for our students and our state.
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