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Connections

20420 68th Ave W
Lynnwood, WA 98036
http://www.edmonds.wednet.edu

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Contact Information:
Shawn Webber
Program Specialist
425.431.5078
webbers@edmonds.wednet.edu

Program Specification:

Emphasis:

Gender:

Rating:

Prevention
Intervention

Both

Moderate Evidence of Effectiveness

Age/Grade Level:

Target Settings:

Target Groups:

Elementary
Middle School
High School
Adult

Suburban

Individuals
School Wide

Ethnicity:

Other Participation Criteria:

All Ethnicities

Description:

The Edmonds School District Connections in-school program meets the needs of high risk students and those who are at risk of dropping out of school. The Connections program identifies high risk students including: foster care, homeless, involved in the juvenile justice system, special education and youth who do not have stable environments. Student identification includes: decline in grades, attendance, classroom behavior, discipline, or family issues. Student Assistance teams provide a wide range of expertise to increase protective factors and accomplish goals. Support Services is provided based on participant needs. Alternative education is also provided as needed at Edmond's Scriber Lake High School. The majority of high schools in Snohomish County have only low intensity prevention/interventions services available for academically at-risk students and have not demonstrated greater holding power The Connections program strengthens the student's connection to school and family. The Program Specialist transitions those youth who are at-risk of dropping out of school to services available that will engage parents and encourage students to stay in school. Prevention is also being addressed through researching and recommending system-wide changes that remove barriers to high school graduation. The Connections program brings a wealth of knowledge and successful best practice program experience that maximizes the current resources targeting at-risk youth. Exit surveys are completed by students who leave the Connections program and this data is analyzed and used to make changes in policies and practices that will enhance services to Snohomish County youth.

Program Descriptors Include:
Mentoring/Tutoring, Service Learning, Professional Development, Academic Improvement, Behavior Management/Discipline, Career Education, Counseling/Advisories/Coaches, Credit Recovery, Extended-School/Summer Program, Family/Parental Involvement, Students with Disabilities, Study Skills

Starting Date: 2009
Students Served Per Year: 50-250
Last Verified: 2010

Risk Factors:

Protective Factors:

Program addresses the following:

Individual factors

  • High-risk social behavior
  • Poor attendance
  • Low educational expectations
  • Lack of effort
  • Low commitment to school
  • No extracurricular participation
  • Misbehavior
  • Early aggression

Family factors

  • Low socioeconomic status
  • High family mobility
  • Low education level of parents
  • Large number of siblings
  • Not living with both natural parents
  • Low educational expectations
  • Sibling(s) has dropped out
  • Low contact with school
  • Lack of conversations about school

School factors

  • Limited resources: expenditures per student/ teacher salaries/ student-teacher ratios
  • School size: too small/too large
  • Race/ethnicity
  • School math achievement
  • School policies and practices

Community factors

  • Youth social attitudes

Program promotes the following:

Relationships

  • Involvement with positive peer activities
  • Perception of support from adults and peers

Independence

  • Healthy/conventional beliefs and standards
  • Positive/resilient temperament

Competence

  • Social competencies
  • Self efficacy

Creativity

  • Problem-solving skills
  • Flexibility

Optimism

  • High expectations by community, family, school, and self
  • Optimistic

Program Resources:

Annual Cost:

The annual cost range of the program is $25,000 - $100,000 or $1000 - $2000 per student.

Funding Sources Include:

Program Staff Includes:

State Agencies
Foundations

Teachers
Counselors
SROs
Parents
School Administrators

Materials Used:

Supporting / Partner Organizations:

Media/CD/DVD
Instructional Texts/Manuals
Computer/Internet Based

Snohomish County Worksource Development Council, Edmonds School District and Verizon

Evaluation Information:

These analyses provide powerful evidence suggesting that SAIL participation has significant effects on student academic outcomes, and specific components, in particular the summer program and WASL preparation, may affect outcomes. The impacts of SAIL on academic achievement, for the most part, were independent of any influences of gender, ethnicity, IEP status and the levels at which students started out. In other words, given two students - one a SAIL participant, the other not - with similar background characteristics and at similar levels of past academic performance, the SAIL student achieved better outcomes over time compared to the non-SAIL student. SAIL's impacts were robust within each school outcome measured and across several outcomes: SAIL summer program participation was associated with an increase in both cumulative GPAs and cumulative credits students earned, compared to those who did not participate; the longer students stayed in SAIL, the more credits they earned, compared to those in SAIL for shorter periods of time, adjusting for total time spent in high school; students taking advantage of WASL preparation offered by SAIL performed better on the 10th grade WASL writing and math tests than those not receiving this assistance; SAIL students appeared to be more likely to remain in the Edmonds School District than non-SAIL students, but the status of those who had left the district proved difficult to track. Therefore, we were unable to draw a firm conclusion about differences in school persistence between SAIL and non-SAIL students. Detailed study shows characteristics of students in terms of background and SAIL involvement for the 55 SAIL and 34 non-SAIL participants included in the analyses. The longer students stayed in SAIL, the more credits they earned, compared to those in SAIL for shorter periods of time, adjusting for total time spent in high school. Students taking advantage of WASL preparation offered by SAIL performed better on the 10th grade WASL writing and math tests than those not receiving this assistance. SAIL students appeared to be more likely to remain in the Edmonds School District than non-SAIL students, but the status of those who had left the district proved difficult to track. Therefore, we were unable to draw a firm conclusion about differences in school persistence between SAIL and non-SAIL students. Detailed study findings Table 3 shows characteristics of students in terms of background and SAIL involvement for the 55 SAIL and 34 non-SAIL participants included in the analyses. Table 3. Characteristics of SAIL and non-SAIL students SAIL students (N = 55) Non-SAIL students (N = 34) Background characteristics Gender: female (%) sail 41.8 non-sail 23.5 Race/ethnicity: non-Hispanic white (%) sail 63.6 non-sail 47.1 IEP (%) sail 21.8 non-sail 20.6 GPA, first semester 9th grade (mean) sail 0.87 non-sail 0.69 Characteristics of SAIL participation Time in SAIL program (mean months) sail 22.5 non-sail 0.0 SAIL summer program participation (%) sail 70.4 non-sail 0.0 SAIL WASL preparation (%) a sail 35.6 non-sail 0.0.

How evaluation data was collected:
Unspecified

National Dropout Prevention Center for Students with Disabilities
209 Martin Street
Clemson, SC 29631-1555
Toll Free: 866-745-5641
TDD: 866-212-2775
Fax: 864-656-0136
Email: NDPCSD-L@clemson.edu

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