The Situation in Maricopa County
Over a quarter-million students live in the Phoenix area - each one with a massive potential. Yet, by third grade, only 1 in 3 students know how to read at grade level. Less than half will go on to attend college.
The Solution: Thriving Together
If we are going to help young people in the Phoenix area succeed - bettering the community for all of us - it will require a unique approach. Thriving Together is a collective impact initiative, combining rich data with people of a variety of backgrounds and perspectives - all with the shared goal of creating a better future for our youth.
Thriving Together has identified six key areas where we can make the greatest difference in students' success along the cradle to career continuum. Of these, we have identified early grade reading, post-secondary enrollment, and postsecondary attainment as our initial focus areas. Each has a specific purpose in increasing the number of students who are successful in attaining key birth-to-cradle career milestones.
“It is a great example of how collaboration and shared information can help us provide a better education for our young people.”
– Dr. Gestson
Creating a better future for our youth
- 13 elementary school district superintendents and PUHSD superintendent convened
- Algebra for All: An additional 99 students passed the algebra AzMERIT assessment
- FAFSA Fiesta: PUHSD reached a historic high in FAFSA completions with a nearly 25% increase
- Maricopa Enrollment Day: 100% of students who enrolled at event persisted at day 45 of the semester. As well, students carried a higher course load than previous years’ PUHSD graduates.
- The school district superintendents in the Thriving Together boundaries have identified the middle school to high school transition period as an area of focus
How Can I Help?
Support Enrollment Days
Support Maricopa Enrollment Day by assisting with transportation and lunch costs. Enrollment in a post-secondary institution requires high school students to overcome multiple barriers, arrange a campus tour, complete FAFSA, and sign up for classes. Typically, students are required to schedule, coordinate and complete these separate events on their own while finishing their high school requirements.
Support FAFSA Fiestas
Support FAFSA Fiestas by assisting with cost of food. Financing postsecondary education represents one of the key enrollment barriers for high school graduates.
You can help break the cycle of poverty by volunteering at Interview Fairs, FAFSA Days, (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) College Application Days, and Project Connect.
There are a variety of volunteer opportunities available to support our community.
Visit vsuw.org/volunteer to learn more.