Beaverton, OR. School attendance is up thanks to Camp Connect, a new program sponsored by the Beaverton Education Foundation (BEF). It is an extension of the summer academic program Camp Achieve which focuses on getting at-risk students back on track. Educators at Camp Connect reached out to 75 students from four elementary schools in the District, all of whom had low attendance rates; many had not been attending school online since Covid-19 hit in March. Camp Connect helped families struggling economically get access to distance learning necessities, such as Chromebooks, iPads, and hotspots.

Pre-covid days in the classroom.

Families were also connected to other services like the District’s Clothes Closet, to food box deliveries and school meals, and to early learning programs and intervention services for their younger children. All Camp Connect students received a “Student Success Kit” with basic school supplies, made possible by BEF, the School District, and community financial support and donations. Additionally, Camp Connect families received supplies including extension cords, lamps, or lap desks along with a gift card to set up for at-home learning.

Here’s a video about the foundation which was made before the pandemic:

Principals at the four schools that received help shared how important home visits were to the success of Camp Connect. “Having something of real value to offer seemed to help families see the schools as their partner,” said Monique Singleton, principal at Vose Elementary School.

Terra Linda Elementary School Principal Christy Batsell praised the program’s outcomes, adding, “The support from BEF made all the difference.”

Based on the success of the Camp Connect Pilot, the program is expanding to better serve students from all of Beaverton’s 34 elementary schools with additional family outreach beginning immediately. Learn more about the expansion.

Teachers chose specific books for each student’s interests, and Powell’s Books sent five books to each student in the mail.

From Beaverton Education Foundation:

The Beaverton Education Foundation (BEF) is a non-profit 501(c)(3), supporting kids from kindergarten through high school, by funding innovative educational opportunities in Beaverton public schools. #bef4kids #BeavertonsChoice

Here’s a link if you’d like to donate to the program.