A program for the parents and students of Montebello Unified School District, Schurr and Bell Garden High Schools.
Students join College Bound Today in the 10th grade. During the five semester program, students:
- work with volunteer mentors monthly
- visit area colleges
- learn about financial aid
- prepare for the SAT
- become part of a college support group
- learn to prepare a strong college application
- take part in special events each year
In February 2009, 10 teams totalling 70 students began work with 30 mentors. In most California high schools, there is one counselor to 1.000 students and no special programs that assist students with preparing college applications.
We now have 75 mentors working with 200 students at Schurr and Bell Gardens high schools in the Montebello Unified School District. We are recruiting 40 new mentors to join the program in February 2011.
Parents are encouraged to participate in all general meetings so that the entire family learns about going to college. Each meeting, before the students arrive, mentors meet with the college counselor and program leaders to prepare for each session. Detailed discussion guides for each session are provided. Special orientation sessions for mentors are also held.
Sessions focus on different themes at each meeting including on-line practice to improve test scores learning about colleges and preparing for college visits, learning how to complete financial aid applications, and discussing practice essays designed to improve writing skills. A special SAT preparation program is also provided.
Students attend college fairs at which a number of colleges make presentations. Mentors also take the students on their teams on at least 4 campus visists. The program includes three all-day campus visits to major colleges and universities in the Los Angeles area.
Creative Education Partners (CEP), is sponsored by Community Partners, a Los Angeles 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Funds for the program are raised through contributions and foundation grants. A program advisory committee meets regularly with staff and provides regular oversight.
Mentors are recruited, trained, assigned and supervised by CEP, with the support of MUSD. Mentors must provide MUSD with a Live Scan background check from the California Department of Justice. Parents provide written permission for their children’s involvement in the program and for any local travel connected with program activities.
The program was founded by Todd Clark, President of CEP and Emeritus Executive Director of the Constitutional Rights Foundation and Daniel Clement, Esq., Senior Fellow, Community Partners, formerly Senior Counsel at the Sempra Law Department.
Volunteers interested in becoming mentors should call either Todd Clark or Dan Clement at the numbers listed below. Mentors must have college or post-secondary educations. They must commit to attend all meetings and work with their assigned students at least until they graduate from high school.
Tax deductable contributions are encouraged.