Tacoma Whole Child Partnership

Greater Tacoma Community Foundation, Tacoma Public Schools, and numerous Expanded Learning providers have been engaged in the Wallace Foundation-funded Tacoma Whole Child Partnership. This community-wide effort aimed to ensure every child is healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged in and out of school.

Through the Tacoma Whole Child Partnership, students at multiple school sites had on-site access to Expanded Learning Opportunities like visual and performing arts, dance, robotics, STEM, mentorship, sports, and more. School staff and local Expanded Learning providers collaborated on building the values alignment, trusted relationships, and professional development necessary to create a broader vision of what’s possible.

“Expanded Learning Opportunities are the key to supporting young people outside of the school day. They provide spaces where children and youth find their spark, where they can foster relationships with caring adults who model wisdom and grit, and where they can flex their muscles in social emotional learning and life skills that will help them thrive in whatever path they choose.  – Fahren Johnson, Director of Strategic Initiatives, Greentrike

Tacoma Whole Child partnership laid the groundwork for the establishment of an Out of School Time Intermediary (OSTI) to serve as a central hub to support equitable, streamlined access to Expanded Learning Opportunities and additional Tacoma Public Schools sites as well as other districts across Pierce County.  In March 2021, Pierce County education and advocacy organization, Greentrike, took on this OSTI role.

 “We know from the data that participation in Expanded Learning Opportunities results in more days at school, lower drop out rates, and better test scores.  We also know that the more our students can have caring adults in their lives, connecting them to all kinds learning experiences, they can develop a broader lens for their future, and become productive members of our community.” – James Neil, Director Athletics & Activities, Tacoma Public Schools

Whole Child Partnership News

Greentrike to Lead Community Efforts for Equitable Access to Expanded Learning Opportunities (February 23, 2021)

Youth Hunger for Connection Served Up By Online Expanded Learning Opportunities (November 12, 2020)

The Legacy of Mr. Rogers in Tacoma’s Whole Child Virtual Expanded Learning (October 8, 2020)

Local Online Learning Adapts for Youth Who Don’t Want to Feel Alone (August 13, 2020)

Social Emotional Learning Helps Kids Navigate COVID-19 Disruptions (May 14, 2020)

Parents See the Difference Caring Adults Make for Their Students (March 11, 2020)

Every Adult Can Build Youth Resilience and Help Students Thrive (February 13, 2020)

Simple Strategies Help Youth (and Adults) Move Through Challenging Emotions (January 9, 2020)

Warm Greetings, 3 Breaths and a Constitution Help Students Thrive (December 12, 2019)

20 Minutes Can Make All the Difference for Students in Expanded Learning (November 14, 2019)

Working Together, Tacoma Organizations Remove Barriers to Expanded Learning Opportunities (October 9, 2019)

Community Partnerships Expand Learning Opportunities for Tacoma Students (September 11, 2019)

Local Boys Help Each Other Grow in “The Gent Way” Through Tacoma Gents (June 12, 2019)

Local Girls “Step” Into Leadership Roles After School (May 8 2019)

The Skate in School program provides elementary aged youth access to skateboard equipment and instruction to help them learn to skate safely. In providing in-school skate programs we not only encourage and support the next generation of skateboarders but also break down the negative stigmas and stereotypes associated with skateboarding, which is an extremely powerful experiential learning tool. Students in learn about all the components of a skateboard, the basics of skateboarding, including safe skate practices, as well as how to use skateparks and spaces safely and effectively. Our organization provides all the necessary tools and equipment for beginning skateboarders.

Big Brothers Big Sisters professionally supports youth and mentors in 1-to-1 mentoring relationships. School-aged youth are paired thoughtfully with screened and trained volunteer mentors. The goal is for mentoring relationships to last at least one calendar year in order to achieve positive outcomes in the following areas: social/emotional well-being, academic success and avoidance of risky behavior.

Bricks 4 Kidz® is devoted to providing an extraordinary atmosphere for children, where we learn, we build, and we play with LEGO® Bricks. Classes are designed to teach the fundamentals of S.T.E.M. (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education, built around our proprietary model plans, created by engineers and architects. At Bricks 4 Kidz, we believe that kids learn best through activities that engage their curiosity and creativity.

The First Tee of South Puget Sound positively impacts the lives of young people by providing educational programs that build character, instill life enhancing values and promote healthy choices through the game of golf. Through after school and in school programs, we help shape the lives of young people from all walks of life by reinforcing values like integrity, respect and perseverance through the game of golf.

Gentlemen By Choice is a male youth enrichment program that uses a whole child concept to provide training in the areas of Leadership, Image, Financial Management and Etiquette. These basic L.I.F.E. skills are essential for proper growth and development and are aligned with the organization’s “classroom to boardroom” philosophy. Character traits such as accountability, responsibility, perseverance and discipline mature as mentees move toward a higher level of emotional intelligence and self-governance.

At Girls on the Run we inspire girls to recognize their inner strength and celebrate what makes them one of a kind. Trained coaches lead small teams through our research-based curricula which includes dynamic discussions, activities and running games. Over the course of the program, girls develop essential skills to help them navigate their worlds and establish a lifetime appreciation for health and fitness. The program culminates with girls positively impacting their communities through a service project and being physically and emotionally prepared to complete a celebratory 5K event. Our program is for every girl. GOTR is a non-competitive program; girls of all abilities are welcome.

Hopes and Dreams Foundation mentorship program provides behavioral intervention and social and emotional skill development to help youth become successful individuals. The core features of behavioral intervention and emotional development include the ability to identify and understand ones own feelings, learn positive options for managing emotions and resolving conflict, develop empathy for others and to establish and maintain relationships.

Our Dance program is an Introduction and Exploration of Dance and related movement and performing arts! We will look at Ballet, Jazz, Modern, HipHop, and Tap genres to build core strength, balance, fine motor skills and muscle memory. Students will expand their knowledge of music & the history of Dance; gain self confidence in personal identity & expression; and learn the basic foundations needed to create and choreograph their own artistic pieces.

Krownless Kids is a program that focuses on education and life skills through an artistic lens. By partnering with community agencies, childcare centers, and schools; Krownless Kids builds relationships with youth and young adults by providing opportunities to enhance their artistic abilities and connect with community artists and leaders. Krownless Kids is Youth Driven. We embrace the talent and voices of the youth and provide artistic platforms for expression and educational guidance.

KBTC KIDS integrates educational PBS KIDS resources into out-of-school spaces, bringing hands-on STEAM and literacy learning experiences to students in kindergarten through 5th grade. KBTC staff implement various PBS KIDS content and curriculum based on the needs and interests of the schools and students we work with. Activities include media and technology integration as well as hands-on learning experiences.

Pierce Conservation District's Environmental Education program serves students of all ages throughout Pierce County. Our programs focus on water quality, habitats, soil, stewardship, and other topics related to environmental science. We offer in-class lessons and activities, as well as field trips, to involve students in hands-on experiences. These activities can include water quality testing, watershed modeling, soil investigations, and many others.

The Rock Paper Scissors Foundation L.I.L.Y Youth Mentoring Program provides sound and loving mentoring to girls from grades 2-12. program is designed to help young women with topics like bullying, low self-esteem, conflict resolution, boys and sex, self-worth, self-care/love, positive thinking, etc. Our program also helps young women overcome more serious issues like abuse, domestic violence, and suicidality. Additionally, we encourage and uplift young women to plan for the future professionally, academically, and emotionally.

​Each week, students will actively experiment with the principles of science, engineering, art, and mathematics through structured, hands-on, LEGO® based creativity and play. Your learner will create a variety of structures, machines, art and more to solve challenges presented to them in this exciting enrichment club. All students will be instructed by a Snapologist who will guide your learner through a productive atmosphere that encourages learners to challenge themselves and practice their social skills.

Symphony Tacoma aims to make music education accessible all youth, beginning in elementary school and building toward opportunities in high school and the community to become engaged in classical music. We currently offer violin classes for 4th-5th grade students. Violins, sheet music and all other materials needed are provided by Symphony Tacoma.

This program is offered to 4th and 5th grade students. The Tahoma Audubon educator will offer to come into science classes to teach about our local watershed, its connection to the local environment and how resources and water we use in our daily life effect the health of the Puget Sound ecosystem. By giving students a field guide book filled with vibrant pictures of the Salish Sea, engagement and learning will continue after the lesson is over.

Tacoma Arts Live cultural Arts programs embed in school settings to offer art forms like Ballet Folklorico (Mexican regional dance), World Drumming, Step, Acting and more. The Learning, Empathy, Negotiation and Self (LENS) program uses performing, literary and visual arts to guide social-emotional growth, with developmentally appropriate modules for elementary, middle and high school levels. All these programs match students with a Teaching Artist who guides and assesses growth as students work toward greater achievements such as performances, skill shares, etc.

The MESA curriculum is stratified by grade level and specifically crafted for elementary, middle and high school levels. As it pertains to K-5, the modules have been developed to accommodate the appropriate rigor for the elementary level. Materials and components of each project reflect this. Additionally, with the utilization of elementary teachers to implement the curriculum, best practices for the specific grade range are used.

Tacoma Art Museum's Breakfast Sketch Club provides free art access to elementary-aged youth one day a week for an eight-week session. This “open studio” model is student-driven, based on free choice – of materials, subject matter, and style. TAM’s teaching artist provide a selection of drawing materials, papers and drawing surfaces, and various prompts for students who need more direction. Should students desire a more structured lesson or training in specific drawing techniques or styles, the teaching artist can provide such instruction to individual students or to the whole group.

Tacoma Urban League's Male Involvement Program is a Mentoring program, that supports males of color primarily in the areas of social, emotional, personal and academic life. Through guided conversations we reflect on where we have been, our current state, and where we want to be, while identifying the barriers to success and the assets we possess to get to our destiny. Through activities we discover more about ourselves, environment and peers.

UnCommon's mission is to invest in urban students through mentorship; empowering and inspiring students to progress with tools to succeed in life and relationships. Our goal is to invest in students throughout their school years and help them see the positive impact they can make in their communities.

The goal of Vision of Eastside is to provide girls in our communities opportunities to belong to something. We work on inner strength and self acceptance through dance and play. The program is ran by Ms. Chelsea and an assistant, who have been trained in DAP and ELO best practices. We teach dance (variety of styles), Stepping and team building skills with children age 4 - 17.

We provide creative writing workshops and academic support in language arts for students in elementary, middle, and high school. Our programs include after school programs, workshops at Reman Hall Juvenile Detention Center, a yearly teen poetry slam called Louder Than a Bomb, college essay writing workshops, Saturday classes, and a free summer camp. All of our programming is free to participants.

THE Y.E.S.S.S.S. PROGRAM stands for The Young Entrepreneurs Structure Sell Systematize and Scale. Y.E.S.S.S. utilizes hands-on culinary training as well as media and presentation skills designed to inform and inspire the entrepreneurial heart and soul of our youth. Students not only learn how to create healthy meals, but also how to document their work, and present it to market.

The YMCA’s Brotherhood and Sisterhood are youth mentoring programs designed to engage students with positive adult role models and provide them with the skills and encouragement to hold themselves and their peers accountable to a higher overall standard of excellence. Our highly-trained staff are committed to being positive caring adult role models, supporting young people in finding their passions and purpose in life, and developing a solid foundation in which to grow.