The Schools of Hope AmeriCorps Project is evaluated on a yearly basis by project partners, including intense external evaluations every three years. Based on feedback from these evaluations, the Project continues to improve and find new ways to support students, volunteers, schools and AmeriCorps members.
Some of the Project’s strongest evidence of success comes from the hundreds of classroom teachers who consistently credit school-based volunteer tutors with increasing students’ academic skills as well as their enthusiasm for learning. Highlights of the 2016-2017 survey results are:
Schools of Hope Annual Teacher and Staff Survey Results:
95% reported that volunteers contributed to an increase in students’ reading ability
96% reported a positive change in students’ attitudes during time with volunteer
91% reported a positive change in students’ behaviors during time with volunteer
Schools of Hope Annual Tutor Survey Results:
95% felt they contributed to students’ improvement in reading ability
94% felt they contributed to students’ improvement in attitude about reading
95% felt they had an increased understanding of student and school needs
The Project has demonstrated multiple successful elements:
1. There is a high degree of alignment between its mission and the primary goals of the participating school districts regarding students’ academic achievement.
2. The Project enjoys broad-based community support in terms of leadership from United Way, buy-in from non-profit and business partners, and actively engaged community volunteers.
3. Through extensive training and individualized support, the Project annually nurtures a cohort of largely young and highly-capable team members without significant backgrounds as educators and ensures their success in educational settings.
4. For more than a decade, the Project has served as a springboard for individuals who go on to future careers in education and public service. Its alumni ranks include numerous classroom teachers, directors and staff of non-profit agencies, members of government service and a cadre of committed, life-long volunteers.
This program has been recognized nationally as a leader in school-community tutoring initiatives and AmeriCorps programming. It has been honored at a White House event, used as a case study in the White House Call to Service, featured in the 2009 congressional budget justification, and published in a book of the 52 most innovative AmeriCorps programs in the country.