UC Santa Barbara Public Affairs and Communications

NEWS RELEASE

UCSB'S GEVIRTZ RESEARCH CENTER EXPANDS HOMEWORK PROJECT TO BAKERSFIELD

November 12, 1999

National College Week is Nov. 15-19

Beginning this week, an after-school, on-site homework center will provide students with help on assignments at four elementary schools in the Bakersfield City School District: Casa Loma School, McKinley School, Leo G. Pauly School and Frank West School.

The Gevirtz Research Center in the Graduate School of Education at the University of California, Santa Barbara established the new program to support students in their academic learning in Kern County. The project—part of the University of California, Santa Barbara/Central Valley Outreach Initiative—is patterned after the Gevirtz Research Center's program in Santa Barbara, Calif. schools, which provides students at each school site with a quiet environment to do their homework and a credentialed teacher to help them.

"The Bakersfield City School District is deeply honored to have this opportunity," said Ida Randall, director of Specially Funded Programs for the Bakersfield City School District. "It is wonderful for the schools, the children, and particularly for the parents—planned activities such as a visit to UCSB expand their horizon beyond K-12 education."

Eighty fourth and fifth grade students will participate in the homework program during the first year of implementation, 20 from each of the four designated schools. The on-site, after-school homework sessions will be conducted four days per week, Monday through Thursday, for one hour.

The homework project has three major areas of focus: 1) Assist students with their homework in a safe, quiet and monitored learning environment; 2) Assists students in the development of good study skills that will promote a sense of personal responsibility and foster success in school; and 3) Promotes and maintains a positive attitude toward regular school attendance and participation in school activities.

"UCSB and the Gevirtz Research Center are committed to community outreach efforts designed to provide prospective students from diverse backgrounds opportunities for increased educational achievement and awareness, preparation, and ultimate access to the educational opportunities of the University of California system," said Vishna Herrity, director of the Gevirtz Research Center.

The school-centered partnership is part of a larger UCSB outreach initiative that also includes the Graduate School of Education, the Office of Relations with Schools, California History-Social Science Project, Materials Research Laboratory and the College of Letters and Science.

Marilyn Gevirtz's desire to improve every child's chances for academic excellence was the driving force behind the after-school on-site homework project that became the Gevirtz Homework Project.

The Gevirtz Research Center is a K-12/University partnership in conjunction with the UCSB Graduate School of Education, the Santa Barbara School Districts, and the private sector. The aim of the center is to collaboratively design and implement innovative educational programs, research their effectiveness and disseminate the findings to educators and policy makers at the local, state, and national level.

National College Week is part of the U.S. Department of Education's "College Is Possible" campaign, which is aimed at alerting students and parents to the variety of postsecondary institutions and finanical options that are available to young people interested in attending college.

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