With more than 27% of county residents lacking a high school diploma (compared with the national average of 15.5%), the community realizes that the problems require a multi-faceted approach. Fresno Housing Authority recognizes the potential for including innovative, model programs that reach well beyond the provision of shelter into the concept of “housing.” Such programs are generally developed through strategic partnerships with community organizations. Fresno Housing Authority is committed to working closely with local and regional educational institutions (preschool through university level) to enhance the educational attainment of young people throughout the county. These efforts include enabling parents affiliated with the Housing Authority to learn more about and have access to resources for their children as well as resources to help them advance their own education. Other long-time and emerging partnerships that support education include programs with private education institutions, Fresno Workforce Investment Board, Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission (EOC), Fresno City College, and First Five Fresno.
Parent Portal with Fresno Unified School District (FUSD)
A recent analysis showed that of the nearly 50,000 residents across Fresno County who participate in Fresno Housing Authority programs, 24,000 are children under 18 years of age. Of those, 19,000 reside within the boundaries of the Fresno Unified School District. Fresno Housing Authority has begun a collaboration with the District to address this reality. One initiative focuses on the District’s “Parent University” efforts. By connecting Fresno Housing Authority parents to their children’s school and providing them access to the District Parent Portal Site on the Internet, parents can check and monitor grades and attendance. This initiative also trains Fresno Housing Authority case workers and other staff to better understand the educational system and to develop contacts in the schools so that parents can get additional resources. For more information, contact Fresno Unified School District at (559) 457-6006.
While the majority of Fresno Housing Authority residents (and 80% of the children) reside within the boundaries of Fresno Unified School District, a significant number of families across the county attend other public schools (see PDF for listing of schools attended by FH residents). The Fresno Housing Authority works with school districts and school sites throughout the county to support their work with Fresno Housing Authority children and families.
Fresno Learn2Earn provides “an education on-ramp for Fresno’s undereducated and unemployed.” The program offers advice and guidance (in the form of education, training, planning, and support) to those considering returning to school. The collaborative program is designed to help individuals who seek to return to school to finish their high school education or advance their training to attain economic and employment goals.
Resource Collaboration Pilot with City of Fresno and FUSD
In early 2012, the Mayor of Fresno convened the Superintendent of Fresno Unified, Executive Director of the Fresno Housing Authority, the Director of the Fresno Economic Opportunities Commission, and key staff in the City Downtown Revitalization Department. The goal was to select key neighborhoods where the agencies overlapped and where resources were being deployed by various organizations, so as to identify opportunities for alignment, ways to increase efficiencies, and to connect key areas of work around neighborhood revitalization and resident engagement. Early analysis has pointed to potential alignment opportunities in inspections/code enforcement, resident/parent communications, and engagement opportunities to impact the built environment. Additional information is available by calling (559) 621-8000.