The Business-Education Roundtable was launched on August 28, 2014 with membership of 80 educators and business people. Participants created a vision for what can be accomplished through continued collaboration between education and business and a structure for local roundtables. Local roundtables are now being convened across the county to begin to work towards this vision.
The Elkhart County College and Career Success Coalition currently has over 70 organizations, which have implemented over 160 activities across the county to work towards the goal of building a countywide culture of college and career success. Elkhart County was named a College Success County by Learn More Indiana because of the significant work accomplished by Elkhart County’s Coalition.
Reaching Higher workshops have been held in four Elkhart County middle schools with a total attendance of over 155 7th and 8th graders with their parents. These first workshops, facilitated by HEA and designed and organized by middle school guidance counselors, helped students and their parents to begin to see post-secondary education as attainable and to understand the importance of their middle school years in setting them on the path to Early College and post-secondary education.
HEA is working with local mentoring agencies to help support a countywide mentoring culture. In May 2014, HEA organized a one-day retreat with 12 mentoring agencies that generated ideas and strategies for promoting mentoring and supporting collaborative work. Follow-up plans include organizing quarterly lunch meetings on issues of common concern and interest across mentoring agencies. As a result of the retreat, Big Brothers Big Sisters has developed a section of their website that provides information on the multiplicity of mentoring opportunities in Elkhart County www.bbbs.org.
Music Together has served 108 babies and their families so far this year. The evaluation results from the previous year demonstrated that 98% of parents felt the class provided a valuable time for focused interaction with their child and 87% of parents felt the class provided valuable information about parenting. 100% of parents would recommend the class to other parents with babies.
Link to Full Evaluation Report.
HEA is partnering with Junior Achievement and Lemonade Day of Elkhart County to ensure that our youth have the opportunity to develop critical skills in work-readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy. In 2014, JA served 2,745 students in 127 classes across Elkhart County. Lemonade Day involved over 800 youth in operating 287 Lemonade Stands.
Adult Literacy Project:
More than 33 tutors are currently paired with adult learners for one-on-one mentoring that supports literacy development. On average, Adult Literacy tutors spend a total of over 97 hours working with adult learners each month.