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Dear CORE Champion, 

It is an exciting time to be a part of our CORE Community! As we prepare for the close of the school year, we also have much to celebrate and look forward to. April 9th marked our first return to in-person programming after a year of operating virtually. We are thrilled to be getting back into a hands-on environment where our programming team can help Scholars thrive. This month also saw the beginning of an important new partnership as we became an officially designated member of the Aspen Institute's Ascend Network, a nationwide collective of organizations that are leading the way in advancing two-generation approaches for whole-family outcomes. We have a lot of good news to share this month, so settle in and get caught up on everything going on in our community: 
  CORE exists because we are committed to working together to ensure equitable education is a reality for all students in the Clark County School District. Last week CORE joined a dozen other education-focused organizations from across Nevada to publish a letter outlining areas for opportunity where additional resources can make an impact in dismantling the barriers that our Scholars and other students face every day. Federal funding from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 is a chance for Nevada to get our future back on track by investing  $1.4 billion directly into young people. Through this funding, we hope to see: 

Free, accessible, comprehensive summer school.

Teachers and parents know that a year of distance instruction has left a serious learning gap amongst large swaths of our student population. The gap is widest amongst already under-resourced students who lacked internet connectivity and dedicated home learning spaces throughout the pandemic. We need a robust summer school session to get our students prepared to start the school year ready to excel in the next grade level, and we must ensure that factors such as cost or transportation don’t present a barrier for any student. 

Target Outcomes:

  • An increase in the percentage of students who take advantage of summer school in the 2021-2022 school year. 
  • CCSD comprehensive schools assigned 90.4% and 77.2% more F’s and D’s respectively during the first semester of this school year than the last. Students should be given the opportunity to remediate these grades, which have been heavily influenced by distance learning, through summer school offerings. 

    Whole-child support based on social-emotional learning and wellness. 

    Mental health has long been a concern in the district, but the pandemic has exacerbated the strain on wellness with  23 CCSD student suicides since March 2020. As our young people prepare to return to in-person learning, we must be ready to support not only their academic progress, but their social and emotional health and learning as well. Access to a dedicated social worker, social-emotional learning opportunities, and mental wellness support are central to our CORE model. We believe that all students deserve these supports. 

Target Outcomes:

  • An increase in the percentage of students who have access to on-demand mental health supports. 

  • Decrease in the number of student suicides, and a system for creating and delivering individualized action plans for any student reporting suicidal ideation. 

Upgraded digital infrastructure and technology.

Families must have options to continue defining the safest way for their students to learn. This pandemic has shown that a great digital divide exists between students who have access to technology in the home, and those without. CCSD must continue to raise the bar in creating high-quality distance and hybrid instruction options, while ensuring that they are accessible to all of those in need. 

Target Outcomes: 

  • 100% of students have access to a laptop or tablet AND quality, high-speed broadband. 
  • Provide and incentivize professional learning opportunities for educators to build on technological knowledge and refine online facilitation skill sets to create engaging and effective distance learning opportunities. 

    We are kid-advocates first and foremost and look forward to working to meet their needs with accountability, partnership, and kindness. CORE commits to being part of the development and implementation of a Promise Tracker that will account for how the funds are used, while ensuring that all of our youth have equitable access to the resources needed for a future empowered by choice. 

Lindsay Harper
Founder & Executive Director


We are thrilled to announce that as of April 9th our team is back at West Preparatory Academy welcoming Scholars to our first in-person programming events of the year.  For the remaining weeks of the 20/21 school year, CORE will be utilizing a mix of hybrid programming offerings as we ensure the safety and health of our entire community throughout this transition. At present, our in-person programming events have been limited to small groupings, however based on the trends we are seeing now, we feel on track for starting the 21/22 school year with most of our Scholars attending in-person. Our Program Manager, Melvin King, has been developing our re-opening plan for the past few months and is thrilled that we can finally start rolling it out. Melvin notes that the reaction from our Scholars has been overwhelmingly positive: "They love it! They love reconnecting with their classmates and the staff, and having an outlet to express their feelings and emotions as we all work to get back to some semblance of normalcy." Directly interacting with our Scholars allows our team to provide much needed social-emotional support as we close out a difficult school year. As Melvin explains, "some Scholars have been burdened with the weight of complicated households where they've been dealing with financial struggles or additional family obligations throughout the pandemic, now our team has more opportunity to interact and help them navigate these issues as we set them up for success."

This month CORE received the distinction of becoming an officially recognized Network Partner Organization of Ascend at the Aspen Institute. As only the second organization in the state of Nevada to receive this recognition, we are deeply proud to be recognized for our efforts to bring two-generational programming to Southern Nevada. 
The Ascend Network is a national group of practitioners, policymakers, philanthropic leaders, and researchers advancing two-generation approaches for whole-family outcomes. Since the launch of the Ascend Network in 2014, Network Partners have spurred significant shifts in the field through two-generation efforts. The goal of the Aspen Institute’s Ascend Network is to mobilize and activate leaders and organizations to influence policy and practice changes that increase economic security, educational success, social capital, and health and well-being for children, parents, and their families.

To be recognized as an official partner of the Ascend Network, CORE had to demonstrate how its philosophy, program and services encompass the guiding principles of a two-generation approach. Being a member of the Ascend Network is a powerful and special opportunity for CORE leaders to learn and connect with others around the country committed to identifying, developing, and implementing two-generation approaches.

"It’s with great pride that we welcome CORE to the Ascend Network,” said Sarah Haight, associate director of Network & Outreach at Ascend. “The impactful work they are doing right now in Southern Nevada is aligned with our mission and approach. We look forward to furthering ideas and collaborations to help move children and their parents toward educational success and economic security.” 

The Ascend Network partner status is especially meaningful as we continue to center our work on supporting and elevating both Scholars and their families.  Research collected by The Aspen Institute has shown that a parents’ level of educational attainment is the best predictor of economic mobility for their children, and that a $3,000 difference in parents’ income when their children are young is associated with a 17 percent increase in the child’s future earnings. Evidence-based data such as this underscores that the success of students and their families are intrinsically linked, making a two-generational approach essential to creating sustained, meaningful change in a young person’s life.

"We want our Scholars and families to thrive,” said our licensed Social Worker, Celinda Dominguez. “This meaningful partnership gives us access to the wealth of credible resources and thought-leaders in the two-gen space which is great news for our Scholars and for our families. This approach further extends the idea of wrap-around services and takes a thoughtful approach to being inclusive of families and their specific and demonstrated needs.”

The success of our community depends on supporters, partners, and true champions like you who help us to build a better world one Scholar at a time. Thank you for joining us on this journey. 
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