Reflecting on the Past, Focused on the Future
Take Stock in Children was founded in the early 1990's, to combat a troubling and persistent dropout rate that plagued the public school system in Tampa. Created by a local education foundation with the backing of concerned community leaders, the initiative sought to give high-potential, low-income students the resources they needed to:
· Graduate from high school
· Go to college
· Become productive citizens
From the outset, the formula for success was elegantly simple;
· Recruiting participants in middle school, early enough in their lives to make a difference
· Providing participants with adult mentors
· Consistently monitoring students' progress
Take Stock in Children emphasized responsibility and accountability among students, their parents and mentors.
The program was inclusive and intensely local, bringing together not only students and school personnel, but outside volunteers, philanthropists, religious groups, civic organizations, the social-services sector and for-profit businesses. The idea was to engage all facets of the community.
In 1995, the Take Stock in Children program began in Pinellas County with 500 students..and has continued to grow.
Two decades later, Take Stock in Children has become a statewide program, and has served more than 27,000 low-income, at-risk children.
In 1997, the Pasco Education Foundation became the lead agency for Take Stock in Children Pasco County. Receiving contributions from local businesses & organizations, the first class consisted of 25 students.
Today, 500+ Pasco students have participated, changing the life-altering words: “If I go to College” to “When I go to college”.