Your Investment's Impact: Education

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Did you know that nationally 1,200,000, or 1 in 3, teens drop out of high school every year?

By the time Amanda called 2-1-1 of WNC, she was at her wits’ end. She had done all she could to encourage her 12-year-old son, Jackson, as he struggled with school and his new environment now that she was divorced from his dad. However, Jackson needed more help than Amanda could provide. He tried to overcome a reading disorder, dyslexia, and had become a B student at the beginning of middle school, but his gains were being erased by his bad behavior, and he now disliked school.

Jackson refused to take medicine for his ADHD, refused to follow his mom’s rules and refused to respect his curfew. Too often, Amanda had been called about Jackson getting in trouble at school. She was concerned that Jackson might not graduate from high school if he continued on this new path. She was desperate for a resource that could help.

After calling 2-1-1, United Way’s community services information line, Amanda was referred to a mediation program and other organizations that could help Jackson first address his anger issues and then work to improve his grades and continue to address his reading disorder. When a 2-1-1 referral specialist followed up with Amanda, she shared that Jackson was responding well to counseling and school support, and she sang 2-1-1’s praises for connecting her with the services her son needed.

Stories like Amanda and Jackson’s are why United Way is focusing on Education as one of the building blocks of a good life for everyone, along with Income and Health. United Way has invested more than $700,000 this year to make sure children’s diverse educational needs are met, that they are ready to enter kindergarten and they move successfully from kindergarten through high school graduation.

As a result of that investment in community partners providing high quality early care, mentors and tutors, conflict resolution, leadership and life skills training, homework assistance and after school support and assistance addressing developmental delays and language-related difficulties, more than 2,398 children will succeed academically, socially and emotionally.