School Success for Every Child

Guided by the belief that the best practices in education and child development result from encouraging and listening to all voices of the community, the William Caspar Graustein Memorial Fund embarked on the Discovery initiative in 2001.  Essentially this work helps community’s establish a collaborative structure for inclusive local decision making in which parents are engaged as full partners.  The initiative, which has grown to 54 communities, is supported by leveraging public and other private investment, partnering with statewide advocates, and offering an array of capacity building opportunities including: parent leadership, facilitative leadership, results-based accountability, and community decision making.  Twenty-three Discovery communities recently completed comprehensive birth to age eight community plans.  Thanks to this work, communities are focused and able to measure their progress toward school success for every child.  One community attributed a dramatic rise in the number of students who attend preschool – from 55.6% in 2006 to 93.1% in 2009 – to their involvement with Discovery.