Every year, Rockland 21C asks Family Resource Center (FRC) coordinators to report on an outcome for which they were able to achieve a useful change in belief or behavior. Coordinators receive technical assistance and professional development from Rockland 21C to help them develop their outcomes and measurement indicators to evaluate impact. In recent years, outcome projects have all supported a literacy goal.

Sampling of Family Resource Center Programs and Their Impact

Early Childhood Development

More children are ready for school.

Families who participated in the evidence-based, early-literacy, parenting and home-visiting program Parent-Child Home (PCHP), obtained an average score of 3.0 across the program’s assessment items in their first year of the program. These scores can take two years to achieve.

PCHP increases parents’ verbal interaction with their children; children explore and interact with their environment; children increase their expressive abilities by using more vocabulary; and they begin to communicate more frequently. Also, on average, participating county children are expressing their emotions appropriately, are exercising self-control, and are demonstrating social skills, including turn-taking and interpersonal skills. See the Video.

88% of the children who participated in RP Connor Elementary School’s FRC program English Language Learner (ELL) Pre-K Playgroup and one year in universal preschool (to which they applied with the FRC’s help) did so well on their kindergarten screening assessments that they did not need to be recommended for summer school placements. Tests showed that they were academically ready. This was a tremendous gain since all of the district’s ELL who were set to enter kindergarten in recent years had been referred to summer school to prepare them for kindergarten.

After attending a series of FRC-run playgroup sessions for preschool students who graduated from early literacy Parent-Child Home Program (PCHP), parents from the North Rockland Central School District reported that they felt more comfortable with the school their child will attend (74%), learned new ideas to support their child’s development (85%), and indicated that their child gained social skills (82%).

These playgroup sessions act as a ‘bridge’ that transfers the connection built with the PCHP home visitor to the school, its FRC coordinator, and one another as a social support group. These connections help the families as their children enter school, an alien place to many participants.

After attending the Nanuet FRC-sponsored Mighty Fours playgroup series offered once a week throughout the school year, each one of the 13 children who participated was able to recognize and write his or her name, cut on a straight line, cut out shapes, identify at least 3 shapes, follow directions during circle time with few reminders, and share and wait his or her turn. The Universal Pre-Kindergarten teacher who facilitated the playgroups reported that in her opinion 11 of the children are either reasonably or well prepared for kindergarten. The teacher also reported that if these children had not participated in the playgroup series, “the majority of them would not have been prepared” for kindergarten. See the Video.

And, on average, 331 children are exposed to fundamental early learning concepts at free, informal preschool education programs run by FRCs.

Family Support

More families feel welcomed at their children’s schools and have their basic needs met.

While the children attended Nanuet’s Mighty Fours playgroup sessions, many of their parents participated in the English as a Second Language class offered to them and facilitated by Nanuet’s Preschool Special Education Committee chair. Siblings received homework help from a middle-school student, while a high-school student assisted the teacher with the playgroup.

And, on average, 276 parents get ongoing support through robust family relationships with FRC coordinators.

Youth Development

More children have opportunities to improve their social, emotional, and academic skills.

99% of the Fleetwood Elementary School students who participated in the FRC-created before-school tutoring program increased their scores in one or more subjects, as demonstrated by school-administered Developmental Reading Assessments. The East Ramapo Central School District provided early buses for the program’s tutors who were from Chestnut Ridge Middle School’s Honor Society. As reported by one of Fleetwood’s first-grade teachers, “If we didn’t have this program, kids would still be struggling and wouldn’t make grade level by the end of the year.” See video.

Nyack teachers reported that “virtually all” fighting among 4th grade girls stopped after students from Valley Cottage Elementary School participated in the evidence-based Girls Circle discussion group.

In the South Orangetown Central School District, teachers reported increases in student math scores, completed homework assignments, and motivation for the 28 students who participated in the after-school FRC-run program, Homework Heroes.

After participating in the Clarkstown FRC’s after-school book clubs, all the students reported that they would join a book club again. 93% found the books very interesting, developed new ideas about the books by sharing their thoughts in discussions with the other students, and would now be more interested in listening to another person’s opinion about a book.

And, on average, 85 students can see in the classroom, thanks to referrals by FRC coordinators to LensCrafters’ OneSight program (donated eye examinations and eyeglasses).

Family and Community Engagement

More families are well connected to their children’s school, are more likely to participate in school activities, and can better support their children in school.

A 50% increase in parent attendance at school-based activities, Committee on Special Education, and Network meetings occurred as a result of a BOCES FRC parent outreach plan, which included phone calls or home visits to every new family.

Teachers reported that 70% of the students who participated in Liberty Elementary School’s FRC program ESL Literacy Group increased their reading level, completed all homework assignments, and participated more often in class afterwards.