Archive for Tuesday, January 10, 2012

United Way outlines strategies for helping student performance in Douglas County

January 10, 2012, 5:09 p.m. Updated January 11, 2012, 11:20 a.m.


Efforts to help students succeed in school are getting an infusion of more than $400,000 from the United Way of Douglas County.

The organization this week revealed its action plans for education, one of three community goals developed during the past 18 months.

Specifically, the United Way plans to invest $405,648 for 2011-12 to help improve student performance in three categories: kindergarten readiness, reading and math proficiency for fifth-graders, and high school graduation rates.

Among specific initiatives to be financed by the education-targeted money from United Way:

• Hire two part-time academic coordinators for the Boys and Girls Club, to help support instructional assistance for the more than 1,300 students who attend after-school programs in Lawrence.

• Provide coaching for early-childhood educators, through the Douglas County Child Development Association, regarding social and emotional instruction for toddlers and preschoolers.

• Support for licensed child-care centers, in-home day cares and others to participate in a standardized rating system to help consumers identify quality operators.

The United Way is committing $405,648 of its anticipated $1.7 million campaign total toward the educational efforts, ones identified through a collaborative approach among United Way agencies and others.

The objective: Focus everyone’s efforts on shared outcomes, ones intended to help the area’s students succeed from preschool through high school.

“The money is targeting the goal,” said Erika Dvorske, president and CEO of the United Way of Douglas County.


Alceste 6 years, 3 months ago

Where is this money coming from?

What is the wage and benefit package for Erica Dvorske? That is....How Much Money Do This Woman Get Paid? Health Care benefits? Sick leave benefits? Vacation benefits? Long/Short term disability benefits? Retirement benefits?

Remove the drapery from the Wizard of Lawrence, Kansas United Way, please.

Bassetlover 6 years, 3 months ago

It is funded by voluntary donations from community members who are INFORMED and wanting to make a difference in this community as it pertains to educational outcomes, unlike yourself As for her salary, what does that have to do with the price of tea in China?

Alceste 6 years, 3 months ago

You mean a handful of school marms who sit around and wring their collective hands and then pat each other on the back, each telling the other what a fantastic service they're providing....quietly making deals "You do this service and my operation won't start a program which is similar and I'll do that service and you don't start a program which addresses what I'm doing, ummm k?" "That way we can do things the way we've always done 'em and keep our jobs."?

As for the salary numbers, what's there to hide? How much is a "United Way CEO" worth compared to the state worker who is actually "in the trench" doing the digging and not hobnobbing hither and yon with the other hens in the barnyard? Alceste states the people digging the trench ought to be getting the same amount of money, if not more, than some bubbleheaded boobie (Lost in Space reference from Dr. Smith); same with the benefit package.

Oh not tax work:

oliveoyl 6 years, 3 months ago

You should be able to look up their annual report on their website. I doubt it shows it broken down by employee but you should be able to see what it costs to run the agency as well as how much money is allocated to what agencies.

mriley 6 years, 3 months ago

Sounds like 3 good steps to help achieve the objectives that were identified in the public surveys completed by the United Way. I feel confident about how my United Way donation is being used!

oliveoyl 6 years, 3 months ago

Sounds like an initiative that many non-profits already do and/or pigeonholes other agencies into areas they don't necessarily work in.

I'm all for the United Way, as many services wouldn't be around if UW didn't exist, but as an annual giver and a non-profit employee I'm not a fan of the way UW is changing across the nation to introduce their Community Impact Goals. In my opinion, it seems desperate and a way for UW to stay relevant in a bad economy. All it does is create redundancies while it defunds other non-profits.

I two cents...

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