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  "Catalyst for College"    
September 2010

ALearn's summer programs went extremely well, serving over 1,000 students from 7th grade through high school in intensive math and college preparation/focus. Since most of the school districts could not fund any summer programs, ALearn and its partners were able to fill  what is now a large hole in California's education system. We appreciate  the support we have received from all of you and the corporate community to be able to produce high quality summer programs for underrepresented students.

Come celebrate this success and hear directly from Superintendents, teachers, college teaching assistants and students at our ALearn College Catalyst Breakfast (see sidebar).

Listen to a few students entering 9th grade talk about their "proudest moment" of their summer program:

"My proudest moment this summer was maintaining an A for the whole summer course. I'm proud of this grade because I know I worked hard for it."

"This summer my proudest moment was getting into the geometry class and actually understanding all the material. I was proud of myself for completing all my assignments."
Warmest Regards,
Kathryn S. Hanson
CEO & Founder

SJSU group - small
 Class at San Jose State University
Math Acceleration Program (MAP)
The MAP program went extremely well this summer, and we're happy to share the results with you.   Through our partnership with Silicon Valley Education Foundation and the Hispanic Foundation of Silicon Valley, we served almost 1,000 underrepresented, first generation students in an intensive math and college prep program.  We applaud the incredible effort, dedication, and enthusiasm from 40 teachers, administrators, 42 college Teaching Assistants, families, and students from nine districts across Santa Clara County!

We are proud to present the students' results below, starting with the growth/improvement in student scores on the post-tests vs. pre-tests on the America's Choice Navigator curriculum:

Math Acceleration Program for 7th grade Pre-Algebra

20 MAP classes: 494 students (84% Retention)

Pre/Post Results - 7th Grade Pre-Algebra
  • Understanding fractions: 25% improvement
  • Word problems: 20% improvement
Stepping Up to Algebra for 8th grade Algebra

19 SUTA Classes: 497 students (80% Retention)

Pre/Post Results - 8th Grade Algebra Readiness
  • Rational Numbers: 24% improvement
  • Word problems & operations: 16% improvement

Experiences of Growth and Motivation in their own words:

"The program was flexible and allowed for the teacher to add his/her own spark and knowledge to the classroom. I like how much information I was given access to. The students really seemed to have a good time. The college focus was very positive and allowed for the students to start moving their thoughts and goals in that direction."  MAP Teacher

"I think the teacher-TA support team for the students really helped the students stay motivated and grow as thinkers and mathematicians.  The creativity of the teaching teams to engage the students really helped.  The students enjoyed themselves and learned a lot!"  MAP Teaching Assistant

 "You wont forget the math when you go back to school." MAP Student

"The MAP-SUTA helped me learn so much, not just math." MAP Student

Special thanks to Julie Cates, Director of ALearn Programs, and Rick Alves, Summer Program Director, and the rest of the ALearn staff for the incredible work and dedication they have devoted to the program.
AVID Bridge Update

Our Bridge program at Overfelt High School in Eastside San Jose Union High School District was extremely successful in motivating students and getting them on the math and college track. The incoming high school freshmen made significant gains in math, with many of them passing a full year Algebra I course in our intensive five week summer math classes - at more than double the passing rate of students taking the full year course. The Geometry students had a pass rate of 94% - amazing!

50/53 Geometry students passed into Algebra II: 94%
49/70 Algebra 1 students passed into Geometry: 70%

  • 144 students received full 10 credits
  • Daily homework completion percentage was 80-90%, with 85 students at 100%
Student Voices: here is what the students had to say about the program

"I really liked how the teachers pushed us to complete the work we had to do in class. I also like how they always thought positive about every single one of us."

"What I like about this program is that I really did not want to go to college and because of this program now I am thinking of giving college a chance."

Thanks to the program director, Joe Albers, and to the dedicated teachers, college teaching assistants and high school volunteers that made this summer's program so successful.
 girls SJSU
Girls attending San Jose State University
In This Issue
MAP Update
AVID Update
College Catalyst Breakfast
ZOOMZ Update
Donor Updates
Board Updates
College Catalyst Breakfast

Come join us for ALearn's inaugural College Catalyst Breakfast on October 27 from 7:30-9a.m. at Sharon Heights Golf & Country Club, Menlo Park.

We will celebrate the success of our programs and listen to the experiences of first generation students and teaching assistants who have benefited from them.  Come share our celebration! Your support is instrumental in helping ALearn continue its mission of advocating for first generation students. 

Please register at by October 20th.


Quick Links

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ZOOMZ Update

Our social networking site for first generation high school and college students has a new face! The new Aim4College section will help high school students find relevant information about the steps they need to take in each of the four years of high school to guarantee that they will be able to go to college. With many schools cutting college counselors (California counselors have almost 1,000 students to track), we hope to make the go-to place for first generation college students.

Donor Updates

In the last two months, ALearn has received new donations from Wells Fargo,  Blach Construction, and Frank Pisciuneri, and has received renewed support from Deloitte and Diane & Bob Frankle. Many of our donors were feted at a MAP SUTA Celebration Event, in conjunction with our partners Silicon Valley Education Foundation and the Hispanic Foundation of Silicon Valley on August 26. The photo of our donors from that event is below.

 Donors - smal picture
Board Updates

ALearn is delighted to welcome the newest member of our board, Barbara Adey, Senior Director at Cisco Systems. With an impressive background in technology, consulting, and management, Barbara will contribute her expertise to ALearn's strategy and development. 

As the Chief of Staff to the Senior Vice President of Wireless, Security and Routing, Barbara oversees strategy and operations for the Borderless Networks business at Cisco.  Prior to joining Cisco, Barbara was the Vice President of Technology for the Canadian Cable Television Association.  She has worked in every facet of high-tech from software development to product management to sales to regulatory policy and strategy consulting. Welcome Barbara!