ATLANTA – July 29, 2016: The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta announces a new pilot program dedicated to increasing parent voice in Atlanta Public Schools (APS) ultimately leading to greater student success. Parent Leaders United for Students, known as PLUS, is a grassroots parent engagement effort targeting the Carver, Douglass and Washington High School clusters, with a broader focus on all parents throughout the APS district.
PLUS will be introduced to the Atlanta Public Schools community as an exhibitor at the Back-to-School Bash Saturday, July 30 at the Georgia World Congress Center.
PLUS formed in response to research that shows that parents have the greatest potential to improve the education of their children through home, school and system-level participation. When parents are engaged with schools, children generally achieve better grades, test scores and attendance and show higher aspirations and motivation toward their education.
“PLUS is a vehicle that builds on the assets that parents, partners and communities bring to the table in order to create positive change,” said Tyronda Minter, director, community for the Community Foundation. “PLUS seeks to remove obstacles by meeting parents where they are, working to increase active participation, communication, and collaboration between parents, schools, and communities.”
PLUS has three primary strategies:
- PLUS Family School Community Partnership (FSCP): The partnership provides an effective family support strategy, initially launching in Boyd Elementary and former Connally Elementary Schools. The schools will use Community Engagement Liaisons to engage and create Parent Action Groups that aim to boost parental interaction and collaboration with teachers and schools.
- PLUS Academy: These learning sessions are open to the entire APS parent community and provide evidence-based courses that educate and empower parents to become leaders in their schools and communities.
- PLUS Small Grants: Where commitment is high but resources are few, PLUS Grants will help parents and communities transform grassroots ideas and homegrown energy into projects that build relationships, change communities, develop leadership and produce lasting results. Grants range from $250 to $1,000. Grant application can be found here.
PLUS is administered and powered by the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta and is privately funded by philanthropists who recognize the power that successful schools have to build strong communities, break cycles of poverty and help children achieve their dreams. Families First, which for the past 125 years has been providing empowering solutions for Atlanta’s most vulnerable populations by connecting, strengthening and sustaining families is implementing FSCP. PLUS Academy will be implemented by HTI Catalysts, a collaborative network of consultants that provides coaching, facilitation and professional development to schools, youth organizations and community-based organizations. Partnership for Southern Equity (PSE), a nonprofit focused on promoting equity and shared prosperity in the region, serves as the PLUS nexus and on the ground community mobilizer. Learn more at the Community Foundation’s website.
About the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta
Since 1951, the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta has been connecting the passions of philanthropists with the purposes of nonprofits doing that work. With 65 years serving the 23-county Atlanta region and a robust team of experts, the Community Foundation manages the behind-the-scenes details, empowering our donors to focus on the joy of giving. The Community Foundation is a top-20 community foundation nationally with $920 million in current assets and is Georgia’s second largest foundation. Through its quality services and innovative leadership on community issues, the Foundation received more than $113 million from donors in 2015 (unaudited) and distributed more than $139 million that same year to support nonprofits throughout the region and beyond. In 2016 Charity Navigator named the Community Foundation a four-star rated nonprofit, its top distinction. For more information, visit: cfgreateratlanta.org or connect with the Foundation via Facebook , LinkedIn and Twitter.
Louise Mulherin, Public Relations Manager