State Center Community College District (SCCCD) has been awarded a $1.5 million grant from the California Community College Chancellor’s Office to support the launch of the Central Valley Promise (CVP).
The program seeks to create transformational change in high school students’ college-going behaviors. To accomplish this task, the project capitalizes on the work of regional K-16 partners including shared educational initiatives, instructional alignment, student preparation, and technology. In addition to supportive services, informational outreach, and collaborative educational activities, the Central Valley Promise removes a huge barrier by making the first semester of community college free to eligible participants.
Together with regional educational partners, SCCCD will leverage existing resources and implement regional best practices for students from 6th grade through college; providing an intersegmental response to low college going rates in Fresno, Kings, Madera, and Tulare counties. The regional scale of the CVP project is unique, as one of the only programs of its type to include both multiple community college districts (SCCCD and West Hills), and multiple unified school districts (Fresno, Kings Canyon, Sanger, Firebaugh-Las Deltas, and Mendota), as well as university partner, California State University, Fresno. In addition to these entities, the CVP is supported by regional agencies including the Fresno County Office of Education (administrative coordination), and the Central Valley Community Foundation (endowment and fundraising). The willingness of educational institutions and strong community partners to engage in this critical work provides an excellent opportunity to create a replicable model for future project expansion.
Planned CVP services include community, staff, and faculty development; regional coordinated endowment efforts; and a community college pilot project to establish best practices for coordination between educational partners (SCCCD, Fall 2018). Community members and organizations interested in receiving additional information should contact Lucy Ruiz, SCCCD Executive Director of Public Relations.
“This grant award will act as a springboard for change in the Central Valley,” SCCCD Chancellor Dr. Paul Parnell said in a statement. “The Promise demonstrates our commitment to education for all community members, and provides evidence of the strong partnerships between regional colleges, schools, and the business community. The project will foster college success, and help eradicate unemployment within the region we serve.”