Super Stars Literacy Newsletter

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					Super Stars Literacy Newsletter
F all 2 0 08                                                        Mich ael Mower y , Ex ecu t iv e D ir ect or
P r em ier e Is s u e                                                      Er in D r ak e, P r ogr am D ir ect or

                                           Executive Director’s Message
                                           Welcome to the first Super
                                           Stars Literacy newsletter!

                                           These are very exciting times
                                           for the award-winning early
                                           literacy program that the Junior
Our identity is composed of a tree and     League of Oakland-East Bay
stars. The tree signifies the foundation
and commitment of education within the
                                           (JLOEB) developed in 2002 and
community, while the stars represent the   has continued to support.
individual students who flourish and
benefit from our program. When you plant
a seed to read, what grows is the          In the last two months alone,
opportunity for a bright future for all
students in the Super Stars Literacy       Super Stars Literacy has:
                                            Hired our first full-time
                                             Program Director, Erin Drake
                                                                               we’ve been able to build our
                                             (read about Erin on page 2)
                                                                               program so that, last month, we
                                            Started programs at six           were able to welcome 270 new
                                             Oakland schools this fall (up     Kindergarten, first and second
                                             from two schools last year)       graders eager to become
                                                                               reading Super Stars.
                                            Hired and trained 25 energetic
                                             program staff                     I want to thank all of you, our
                                                                               funders, volunteer supporters,
                                            Received our 501(c)(3)
                                                                               school leaders and collaborative
                                             nonprofit status and formally
                                                                               partners, for helping Super
                                             separated ourselves from
     Year after year, a                                                        Stars Literacy to make these
                                                                               connections with deserving
   substantial majority,
                                            Launched our first ever Major     students and give them the
 many times almost 100
                                             Donor Campaign to build our       opportunity to enter third grade
 percent, of Super Stars
                                             sustainability.                   reading at grade level and with
 students who begin the
                                                                               the self-confidence to continue
  school year struggling                   All of these historic activities    to succeed in school and
   to read, end the year                   serve to advance our mission of     beyond.
 reading at, or near, the                  building early literacy skills in
    benchmark level for                    primary grade children in           Best,
        their grade.                       communities with limited
                                           resources. We’re thrilled that

   In This Issue
   Executive Director’s Message……………………………………………………..1
                                                                                       Michael Mowery
   New Program Director Erin Drake……………………………………………...2                                Executive Director
   School Spotlight: EnCompass Academy…………………………………..…2                                Super Stars Literacy, Inc.
   History of Super Stars Literacy………………………………………….........3
   Super Stars Salutes: Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream Foundation…….4
  Page 2                                    Super Stars Literacy Newsletter

Meet Our New Program Director Erin Drake
New Program Director Erin Drake                                 grade. She          “After spending three years
will oversee the successful                                     also served on      teaching five- and six-year olds in
execution of Super Stars Literacy                               the school’s        an underserved community, I
curriculum at its six school sites.                             leadership          understand how vital early literacy
She brings extensive knowledge of                               council,            is to continued academic success,”
the needs of students and schools                               earning             commented Drake. “I am thrilled to
in underserved areas to this                                    valuable plan-      join a program like Super Stars that
role. A Teach for America alumna,                               ning skills she     makes such a positive, lasting effect
Drake continued working at Budlong                              will exercise in    on the lives of students and their
Elementary School in South Los                                  leading the         families and look forward to working
Angeles after completing her                                    growing Super       with program staff and school-site
service year there. She spent a           Stars staff and implementing and          classroom teachers to deliver
total of three years in this school       further formalizing the Super Stars       curriculum that engages and
teaching kindergarten and first           Literacy program.                         educates our students.”

School Spotlight: EnCompass Academy
In each issue of our newsletter, we plan to profile one          In its mere four years of existence, EnCompass’
of our school partners. For this issue, we are pleased           progressive mission and teaching methods have led to
to introduce EnCompass Academy Elementary School,                great success. Last year, they were one of only four
one of the four new school sites at which Super Stars            District schools honored for Academic Excellence for
Literacy began offering its program this fall.                   Closing the Achievement Gap, for Absolute
                                                                 Performance, and for Student Growth. In 2005,
                                EnCompass Academy is             EnCompass moved into a brand new campus, and was
                                located on 81st Avenue           recognized by the district for top acceleration of
                                in East Oakland, and             students: over 40% of students grew by 40 points or
                                opened in 2004 as part           more on CST ELA/CST Math, some increasing by more
                                of the Oakland Unified           than 100 points. The school’s API score has also
                                School District’s New            increased over 100 points, credited to the school’s
                                Small Autonomous                 adherence to a standards-based curriculum that
                                School policy, which             emphasizes high achievement through a whole-child
                                was designed to                  approach. EnCompass shares Super Star Literacy’s
                                alleviate overcrowding           emphasis on building resiliency through development
                                at another large,                of social/emotional skills, and is committed to closely
                                underperforming                  monitoring individual student progress and offering
                                elementary school. Of            integrated tiers of support to accelerate academic
the 198 students in grades K-4, 29% are African                  achievement.
American, 3% are of Asian descent, 67% are
Hispanic/Latino, and 1% are Pacific Islander. 97% of                                               Virgtrese McGee, the
students are classified as economically disadvantaged,                                             Super Stars Literacy
and 52% are English language learners.                                                             Program Coordinator
                                                                                                   at EnCompass, is very
This innovative and inspiring school was designed by                                               enthusiastic about the
East Oakland parents and public school educators, and                                              way that the program
the current Principal, Minh-Tram Nguyen, is a founding                                             has been received at
member of the school.                                                                              EnCompass. “Super
                                                                                                   Stars Literacy has
                                                                                                   been welcomed by the
Plant a Seed to Read! Super Stars Literacy                       school with open arms. I see the program growing and
not only helps children increase their reading                   being a part of the school for many years to come. Our
proficiency, but also helps build self-confidence,               goal is to improve the reading skills of our students so
communication and social skills that serve these youth           they become big fans of reading and won’t be
well into adulthood. To make an investment in their              intimidated by having to read on their own or in front
future – and ours – please send your tax-deductible              of a classroom. We want them to be fully engaged in
donation to: Super Stars Literacy, Inc., 675                     reading for all the years to come, which will be of great
Hegenberger Rd., Oakland, CA 94621 or make an                    benefit in their educational journey.”
online gift at
 Super Stars Literacy Newsletter                                                        Page 3

The History of the Super Stars Literacy Program
The Super Stars Literacy           disadvantaged. After two years     voted to establish the program
program began as a project of      of community-wide needs            as a separate nonprofit. JLOEB
the Junior League of Oakland-      assessments, research and          will continue to provide Super
East Bay, Inc., (JLOEB) an         collaborative program develop-     Stars Literacy with a volunteer
organization of women              ment with the Oakland Unified      committee to assist with fund-
committed to promoting             School District and several key    raising, marketing, and
                                   community-based organizations,     volunteer tutor coordination
                                   the Super Stars Literacy pro-      during the 2008-09 school year,
                                   gram was born. Super Stars         and Super Stars Literacy is in
                                   began services in 2002, at one     the process of hiring additional
                                   of Oakland's most economically     administrative staff to replace
                                   and socially disadvantaged         the valuable volunteer support.
                                   elementary schools, Hoover         Several key JLOEB members
                                   Elementary in West Oakland.        will remain on the Super Stars’
                                                                      Board of Directors, and the
                                   Following upon the success of      Junior League’s strong public
                                   Super Stars Literacy in            affairs and advocacy voice in
volunteerism and improving         improving the reading and
communities through the            socio-emotional skills of Hoover
effective action and leadership    Elementary School students,
of trained volunteers. Since       and the successful launch of the
1935, JLOEB has focused its        program at a second Oakland
efforts on improving conditions    site (Parker Elementary) in
for underserved children           February, 2007, JLOEB under-
throughout Oakland and the         took a “needs assessment” of
East Bay Area by collaborating     other underserved East Bay
with other community-based         schools and districts to gauge
organizations and social service   the interest and support for
agencies to develop sustainable    expanding the reach of our         Sacramento will ensure that the
and creative solutions for areas   early literacy intervention        issues that Super Stars Literacy
of need; providing start up        program. The results were          confronts (including school
funds or funds to help bridge      overwhelming. East Bay Prin-       readiness, state testing issues
critical program shortfalls;       cipals and District leaders        and the plight of children in
building organizational            voiced a strong desire for the     poverty) will continue to be
structures; obtaining nonprofit    addition of Super Stars Literacy   voiced at a statewide level.
status; recruiting and providing
volunteers to implement                                               During its years as a project of
programs for up to five years.                                        the Junior League of Oakland-
                                                                      East Bay, Inc., Super Stars
To date, JLOEB has committed                                          Literacy was recognized with
more than 7 million volunteer                                         several awards honoring the
hours and approximately $3                                            quality of its programming and
million to efforts aimed at                                           the positive impact it has had
improving the lives of children                                       on the community: a Certificate
and their families in Alameda                                         of Recognition from the
and Contra Costa Counties. The                                        California State Assembly in
core values and beliefs that                                          2004, the national AJLI
guide the motivation and           as an after-school complement      (Association of Junior Leagues
actions of JLOEB include our       to their classroom literacy        International) /Crest Whitestrips
belief that children should have   curriculum. Even several           Community Smile Award from
equal opportunities in life for    organizations outside California   AJLI in 2005, and the Diablo
health, safety, education and      expressed interest in              Magazine “Threads of Hope”
training.                          implementing such a program        Award presented in 2005 to
                                   and asked for our assistance.      Carla Koren, the JLOEB member
In 2000, the membership voted                                         who was most instrumental in
to focus its efforts on the        In order to facilitate the         founding Super Stars Literacy
education of K-8 children who      expansion of Super Stars           and continues as its Board
are economically and/or socially   Literacy, JLOEB membership         President.
                                               Grade Salutes:
                                       Super Stars Level News      Page 3 of 4
                                       Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream Foundation
                                      The results that Super Stars Literacy     In making its most recent grant,
                                      is achieving in improving the             Dreyer’s Foundation observed that it
                                      educational opportunities for East Bay    was “impressed with the work of the
     675 Hegenberger Road             students would not be possible            Super Stars Literacy Program in
           Suite 250                  without the dedicated support of our      addressing the literacy needs of at-
      Oakland, CA 94621               key funders. In future editions of our    risk Oakland students.” Dreyer’s
                                      newsletter, we will continue to profile   commended our “organization, the
            Phone:                    our financial supporters. Today, we       clearly structured program at the
        (510) 777-0870                start with a funder that has been a       school sites, … [our] long range
             Fax:                     dedicated supporter of Super Stars        vision, and consistent monitoring of
        (510) 777-0870                Literacy since the Junior League of       students’ progress towards their
                                      Oakland-East Bay launched the             literacy goals.”
          E-mail:                     program in 2002: Dreyer’s Grand Ice         Cream Foundation.                         We are proud of the trust that
                                                                                Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream Foundation
                                      In 1987, Oakland-based Dreyer’s           has placed in Super Stars Literacy and
 Super Stars Literacy, Inc. is a      Grand Ice Cream, Inc. established the     we take seriously our responsibility to
501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.     Dreyer's Foundation to give young         uphold that trust by continuing our
  Federal Tax ID #51-0666163          people a better chance to achieve         success in building the literacy and
                                      their potential. The mission of the       social development skills of more and
                                      Dreyer's Foundation is to promote         more deserving students.
    We’re on the Web!                 family, school and community
                                      environments that build skills and        Dreyer’s Foundation is a constellation
                                      foster talents in young people.           in our galaxy of Super Stars!

                                Super Stars Literacy, Inc.
                                675 Hegenberger Road
                                Suite 250
                                Oakland, CA 95621

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