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SFSU Public Affairs Press Release

Published by the Public Affairs Office at San Francisco State University, Diag Center.

#037--December 3, 1998; For Immediate Release
Contact: Ted DeAdwyler
(415) 338-1665

College students from S.F. State to help at-risk youngsters get a jumpstart on success in school

Jumpstart, part of AmeriCorps, launches S.F. program on Saturday, Dec. 5

WHAT: Dozens of youngsters ages 3-6, their parents, teachers and college students from San Francisco State University kickoff the San Francisco opening of Jumpstart, an AmeriCorps program to help at-risk preschool children prepare for elementary school.

WHEN AND WHERE: Saturday, Dec. 5 at 10 a.m. at the Theresa S. Mahler Children’s Center, 990 Church Street, San Francisco. After the formal program, the S.F. State students will meet with the youngsters, parents and teachers at the center until 4 p.m. and assist with projects such as washing toys and landscaping.

DETAILS: Forty San Francisco State University students, all Jumpstart AmeriCorp members, on Saturday begin a 20-month commitment to build the literacy and learning skills of at-risk children in the Mission and Bayview. The 40 S.F. State students, chosen from more than 100 applicants, will work one-on-one with at-risk children ages 3-6 who have been identified by their teachers as needing individualized instruction. Co-sponsored by the San Francisco Unified School District, the program is designed to build literacy and social skills to help ensure success when the children begin elementary school. The S.F. State students will work at the Theresa S. Mahler Center in the Mission district and at the Grace Child Development Center in Bayview. They have signed up to work with the children and their families through two school years and one summer for a total of 900 hours. At the end of that time, each college student, many of whom plan to go into teaching, will receive an educational award of $2,400 throu gh AmeriCorps. The awards can be used to repay educational loans or future tuition expenses. San Francisco now joins Boston, New Haven, New York, Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles with Jumpstart sites. Researchers have found that the five-year-old Jumpstart program helps to reduce problem behaviors of children and improve readiness for school. Jumpstart’s kickoff in San Francisco comes as California Governor-Elect Gray Davis has pledged that every child in the state will learn to read by the end of the thi rd grade.

At the opening Dec. 5, speakers will include Aaron Lieberman, president and CEO of Jumpstart as well as several S.F. State students and Jumpstart Corps. members.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Call either Elleney Soter, executive director of Jumpstart at S.F. State, at (415) 338-3623 or 338-3884 or Ted DeAdwyler of the S.F. State Public Affairs Office at (415) 338-7110.


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