69 preschool students graduated from Santa Maria Community Services’ POP (Promoting Our Preschoolers) and SPARK (Supporting Partnerships to Assure Ready Kids) programs this summer. The graduations were held at Roberts Academy Thursday August 4 (English graduation) and Friday August 5 (Spanish graduation). Roberts Academy is a partner of Santa Maria and houses their International Welcome Center. Graduates will be attending close to 20 different elementary schools.
Congratulations to our 2016 Graduates
POP is a twice-a-month home visitation program that emphasizes giving parents and caregivers materials and information for students to be successful in kindergarten. Home visitation is vital to the educational health of families in poverty. The ultimate goal of the programs is to lift up the whole family in their aspirations of success both educationally and in life circumstances while preparing children for kindergarten and continued success in school.
SPARK is a family-focused kindergarten-readiness program that works collaboratively with families, schools, and the community. Each month, children receive educational supplies and participate in home- or group-based learning opportunities in an effort to increase the child’s success in school and life. SPARK works with families to help get their children ready for kindergarten by building reading, language and social skills, and seeks to create a seamless transition into school for preschool-age children. SPARK has helped more than 5,300 Ohio families prepare their preschool-aged children for school. To ensure that barriers to school readiness are removed.
- Santa Maria staff conducted 4843 home visits during the past two years.
- In addition, there have been 103 small groups for international families in the program. Parents and their children develop social connections among one another-three to four families per group.
- Children enrolled for 6 months during the two-year period of time increased average percentile scores on developmental assessments by 17 points.
- Children enrolled for 12 months during the two-year period of time increased average percentile scores on developmental assessments by 26 points.