The Avance program teaches Spanish speaking mothers of young children about parenting and child development. The mothers learn how to be the child's first teacher while the children get prepared for kindergarten. Evaluations have shown that the Avance program helps its participants in the following ways: children perform better in school, parents have a stronger bond with their child, and family well being is increased.
The Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY) is a home-based literacy program that academically prepares preschool children ages 3, 4, and 5 and encourages awareness within the parents of their potential to impact the education of their children. The HIPPY Program promotes parental involvement through family literacy activities that provide all children, particularly underprivileged children, a fair and equal opportunity to receive a high quality preschool experience.
Earning by Learning-
Each elementary school in Vickery Meadow has been provided this reading incentive program. When the child reads a book and passes a computerized comprehensive test, they receive $2.00. The program has been evaluated by Harvard University, where the study showed cash incentives significantly increased the frequency of reading.
Reading is Fundamental-
Lowe Elementary and McShan Elementary receive funding to provide the RIF program. Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) is the largest children's literacy nonprofit in the United States. They prepare and motivate children to read by delivering free books and literacy resources to those children and families who need them most. RIF provides new, free books for children to choose from and make their own.
Research shows that if children are allowed to choose a book to read during non school days, they are more likely to read the book and thus less likely to lose the reading progress being made during the school year. Community partners assist the Foundation in gathering books for 250 children to choose one book for each week of the summer and winter holidays.
Tasby Middle School Incentive Trips-
Fifty eighth grade students who show the most improvement are awarded with a trip to Memphis and Washington, D.C. Seventh graders enjoy a trip to Austin and San Antonio. Teachers from Tasby Middle School plan and chaperone the trips.
This program was created and is funded by the Foundation. Each year 30 sixth grade students are chosen to join the Eagle Scholars program with the understanding that they will continue in the program until they graduate from high school. Participating in the program means that the child will receive academic support, career and college field trips, enrichment and arts opportunities, college readiness training, and personal lifestyle management courses. In the summer an intensive 5 week program keeps the students engaged academically. The Annette Simmons School of Education and Human Development helped the Foundation create this program to keep students in high school and to prepare the students to be successful in college. Students who successfully complete the Eagle Scholars program are eligible to apply for the Foundation higher education scholarships.
Gift cards are given to Conrad High School students as incentives for attendance on Saturdays to prepare for tests. Additionally, gift cards are distributed to the students with the best attendance, the most improved, and the highest grade point averages. Laptop computers are given to the top two senior students.
High School Clubs
Conrad High School provides students the opportunity to join Robotics Club, Debate Club, Student Council, and other enriching afterschool activities. The Foundation provides assistance to the programs through funding training, competitions, and material resources.