COUNTY OF ALBEMARLE
Bright Stars Annual Report
Bright Stars Program – Review of Annual Report
Tucker, White, Ralston, Haines
LEGAL REVIEW: Yes
January 5, 2005
ACTION: INFORMATION: X
The Bright Stars Program began in 1995 in Albemarle County Schools with the first classroom at Stone Robinson Elementary School. Today the program serves six schools and ninety-six four year olds and their families in the following schools: Stone Robinson, Agnor-Hurt, Greer, Scottsville, Woodbrook, and Cale. Bright Stars is an early intervention program for at risk four-year old children and their families that attempts to increase learning opportunities by addressing risk factors that affect school performance. At risk factors are based on a variety of criteria that include such things as parental illiteracy, poverty, domestic violence, substance abuse, chronic illness, criminal activity, developmental disabilities and behavioral, oral language, social or personal difficulties. Funding for the program is partially offset by state dollars from the Virginia Pre-School Initiative but these funds only support 33% of program. The remaining funding for the program comes from local government, the schools and a small grant from Martha Jefferson Hospital that provides dental care support for the children.
Strategic Direction 1: Provide high quality educational opportunities for Albemarle County citizens of all ages.
The annual report provided to the Board for 2003-2004 is a summary of the year in review and does not include Woodbrook Elementary, since that program just began in the fall of 2004. The report provides demographic and program information as well as curriculum, results of test scores, comparative data and impact on families. Finally, there is information from recent surveys of parents, teachers and other staff regarding the program.
More than half of the children that were served in Bright Stars remain at or above grade level in math and reading through the third grade, although there are still children scoring below grade level, producing a challenge for the program to determine the factors that contribute to those children still not keeping up with educational grade levels. Of the twenty-eight former Bright Stars students taking the third grade reading/writing SOL, twenty passed while eight did not pass.
Families have many opportunities to be involved in the program and 97.5% of families attended at least one family event during the school year. Families also benefit from case management services provided by Family Coordinators. Case management services to families at one school resulted in three parents either obtaining their GED, post high school training or enrolling for college level courses; three parents improving their housing situation; and one parent applying for and being hired into a more responsible benefit-paying job.
This report is for information only and does not require any action from the Board.
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