Notes From the GEAR UP Director Shelley Davis

Fall 2005 | | November 21, 2005 at 2:17 pm

On August 17, 2005, the United States Department of Education announced the 2005 awards for GEAR UP. California received funding for a new six-year grant, beginning on September 1, 2005 for $21 million to increase educational opportunities and college-going rates for low-income students.

In collaboration with our partners, much has been accomplished since the program’s founding six years ago. We have seen tremendous growth in the number of communities committed to creating a college-going culture. The leading voice for this movement, Dr. Patricia McDonough, talks candidly about her research in this area on this page.

The School-Based Services component has been the foundation of our model and we will continue to provide a high quality of service to students and families in this next grant cycle. These services and program results are detailed on pages 2 & 3. Our program has served over 196,000 students in 187 schools. Among them, Marina Del Rey middle school, featured in this newsletter.

3,750 students at GEAR UP middle schools have received $2,000 Educational Trust Awards — a total of $7.5 million. The first 250 students will be accessing their awards for college this year. Noe Rivas, Maralle Manachian, and Stephanie Silva are GEAR UP trust award recipients currently enrolled in California Colleges. Read about how the trust awards supported their access to college on page 4.

The California GEAR UP video, “Kids on Campus: A Journey that Changes Lives”, now available in both English and Spanish, was sent to every middle school in California. Two publications–California GEAR UP Program: The First Five Years — 1999-2004: A Bridge to the Future and California Colleges and Universities: The Complete Pocket Guide have been widely distributed. The California GEAR UP Resources and Materials Clearinghouse, hosted at www.californiacolleges.edu is in its third revision.Through the website, it now offers lesson plans for a college awareness curriculum specifically for middle school students. (See page 2)

For the next six years our comprehensive plan is in place to build upon a solid foundation of service, grow the GEAR UP family, share lessons learned and to realize our vision: “Academic Excellence and Access to College for ALL Students”. Celebrate with us as you enjoy this 5th edition of our newsletter!

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