West Oakland Initiative
Breaking Down Barriers to Learning
One of the largest factors keeping many of Oakland’s youngest children from learning is poor attendance. More than 20% of elementary school students in West Oakland are chronically absent, missing more than 18 days or 10% of the school year. Through family, school, and community partnerships, Lincoln's West Oakland Initiative Program increases daily attendance rates and decreases chronic absence through a variety of ways:
- Family Coaching: Supports for families to reconnect to their communities and develop skills and resources for self-sufficiency.
- Student Services: Working with students to build literacy and positive school behaviors.
- Educational Supports: Classroom learning supports, including culturally relevant books, school supplies, holiday/cultural celebrations, and field trips.
Solutions That Come From Families
Students affected by homelessness, poverty and single parenthood are more likely to fall victim to repeated absenteeism, with low-income children four times more likely to be chronically absent than their higher-income peers. Lincoln’s West Oakland Initiative provides early intervention, intensive family coaching, and summer achievement gap programs, and engages parents as part of the team working in support of improving their student's attendance.
Our Unique Model
Solutions to chronic absence vary, but Lincoln knows the most effective model combines solutions that come from families together with supports inside schools to surround students with a community of resources to improve daily attendance and academic achievement. Through a variety of services, kids stay in school, learn to read, and achieve success:
- Family coaching, using a “strengths-based” approach
- Academic support to build literacy and positive school behaviors
- Parent Empowerment Workshops every third Thursday of the month
- Free, automatic enrollment in Oakland Freedom School’s six-week summer lieteracy program at West Oakland Middle School
- DEAR (Drop Everything and Read) Saturdays.