For Immediate Release - June 10, 2011

Patrick-Murray Administration Awards $288,000 in Wraparound Zone Grants to Help Students Reach High Standards

MALDEN - The Patrick-Murray Administration and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education today awarded $288,000 in state Race to the Top funds to five urban districts that will implement the Wraparound Zone Initiative during the 2011-12 school year, creating targeted plans to close achievement gaps and help students reach high standards.

As part of the Wraparound Zone Initiative, new district and school systems will be created to address non-academic and out-of-school learning barriers, while maximizing teaching and learning time to allow educators to focus on raising student achievement.

"Massachusetts is leading the nation in educational achievement, but we still have work to do to address student achievement gaps," said Governor Deval Patrick. "The Wraparound Zones will help address these challenges by connecting schools, students and families with community partners to boost services and raise opportunities for student success."

"These five districts have demonstrated a readiness and capacity to implement this critical work to foster positive school climates and promote greater academic learning," said Education Commissioner Mitchell Chester. "The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education will provide technical assistance to districts, including the establishment of a network of schools to connect practitioners, share best practices and gain valuable insight from the challenges and successes each is facing."

In addition to creating a more positive climate and culture, each school participating in the Wraparound Zone Initiative must do the following: (1) implement a proactive system of identifying student needs in key academic and non-academic areas leading to both school wide supports and targeted student services; (2) customize interventions for high-risk students by integrating a range of resources, including prevention, enrichment, early intervention, and intensive/crisis response services, to tailor the student services from both within the school and the larger community; and (3) monitor school program effectiveness, integrate in-school social workers with school wide practices, and connect families to services by convening relevant agencies and organizations.

"The inclusion of wraparound services is a pragmatic approach to long unaddressed problems in the lives of children, problems that routinely interfere with learning," said Education Secretary Paul Reville. "The Wraparound Zone Initiative will ensure that schools have the opportunity to connect students with these vital services that will substantially improve their ability to arrive at school every day ready to learn."

Participating districts include Fall River, Holyoke, Lawrence, Springfield and Worcester. While each participating district will implement the Initiative differently based on student needs and local community partners, 18 schools within these districts will each create a climate and culture that promotes mental and physical health; positive social, emotional, and intellectual growth for all students; and the creation of new standards of practice understood and practiced by every member of the school community. This initiative is aligned with ongoing efforts of the Patrick-Murray Administration to provide more comprehensive support to students and their family members to ensure that students arrive at school ready to learn and succeed.

The Governor's Achievement Gap Act of 2010 included provisions to accelerate the transformation of the state's lowest performing schools that directed school districts to partner with community and health and human service leaders to address the non-academic needs of students in their turnaround plans.

The participating districts must commit $99,000 per participating school using their local Race to the Top dollars and/or School Turnaround Funds. The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education will additionally provide each of the 5 districts with $16,000 per participating school in School Year (SY) 2011-12. Provided that grantee requirements are met, districts will receive continued funding for SY2012-13 and SY2013-14. Additional districts will be selected to implement Wraparound Zones through a competitive RFP for FY2013 and FY2014 funding.

Participating schools that will be implementing a Wraparound Zone in 2011-12 include:

 

  • Fall River: John J. Doran Elementary School
  • Fall River: Carlton Viveiros Elementary School
  • Fall River: Matthew J. Kuss Middle School
  • Holyoke: Peck Full Service Community School
  • Holyoke: Morgan Elementary School
  • Lawrence: Arlington Elementary School
  • Lawrence: Arlington Middle School
  • Lawrence: Humanities and Leadership Development High School
  • Springfield: Elias Brookings Elementary School
  • Springfield: Brightwood Elementary School
  • Springfield: German Gerena Elementary School
  • Springfield: Homer Street School
  • Springfield: White Street School
  • Springfield: Alfred G. Zanetti School
  • Worcester: Chandler Magnet School
  • Worcester: Goddard Elementary School
  • Worcester: Woodland Academy
  • Worcester: University Park Campus School