As we wrap up our Summer Reading Program, our amazing Back 2 Class Bash and approach this new school year - our services are proving to be more valuable to Southern Nevada than ever before. The reality is, as state funding to schools and other entities to provide academic support dwindles, there are less organizations providing tutoring and academic support Andson Academics - which makes our role even more critical.A recent article from Education Week reports:
Many companies that once provided supplemental education services, or tutoring mandated at academically struggling schools under the No Child Left Behind law, are now scrambling to find new streams of income, or have already closed their doors, in the past year. Steve Pines, president of the Education Industry Association, said that at its peak several years ago, about 2,500 companies and other organizations were approved to work with students using supplement-services funding allocated to improve students' academic performance. About half of the state-approved providers are "commercial entities," according to Pines. Other providers are a mix of school districts themselves, followed by community and faith-based organizations. Today, Pines estimates that the number of organizations providing those services has dropped by 50 percent.
Andson did think at one point that we may apply for some of these various funding sources, but we never have. All of our funding has come from Sonia's initial investment. That said, we are focused this year on securing new, creative ways of funding our programming to make sure our commitment to Southern Nevada can continue for years to come. Our extremely supportive Board has clearly made "thinking outside the box," a general principle in regard to garnering support for an initiative for this upcoming year.
With new agreements with the City of Las Vegas for SAFEKEY locations, our 9 other locations through Boys & Girls Clubs, St. Jude's Ranch for Children, and Communities in Schools as well as interest from various other community partners - this is only our beginning. This school year we have agreed to 13 total sites, with two additional sites in discussion.
Although we have a business background and can apply some very atypical strategies to fundraising, programming and curriculum, we continue to passionately operate Andson as the organization it is - one truly committed to our community. We are focused, and ready for this school year!