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Announcing Commitments To Support The President's Goals To Improve Hispanic Student Achievement

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The Briefing Room

Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release June 15, 2000


President Clinton unveiled the following commitments by the private and public sectors towards fulfillment of the five national goals for improving Hispanic student achievement and educational attainment over the next decade:


2010 Alliance. To close the achievement gap between Latino children and Anglo, African American, and Asian students by 2010, the National Council for Community and Education Partnerships, the National Association for Bilingual Education, the National Council of La Raza, and the National Association for Latino Elected and Appointed Officials will join with leaders from the Ford, Irvine, Kellogg, and Hazen foundations and AT&T, Univision, State Farm Insurance, and General Motors Corporation to convene a summit in Washington, D.C. in October 2000 and commit to a collaborative partnership over the next decade to support the Latino achievement agenda announced by President Clinton at the White House Strategy Session.

The Association of Hispanic Advertising Agencies (AHAA). The Association of Hispanic Advertising Agencies, the national organization of minority-owned and minority-managed advertising firms, will undertake the first integrated Hispanic communications campaign to close the educational achievement gap between Hispanics and the rest of the student population. Entitled “FuturaMente,” the project will be executed through two multi-media campaigns: one will educate the parents of 3-4 year-olds about the importance of early education, and the second will encourage high school youth to pursue a career in teaching.

American Library Association (ALA). The American Library Association has committed to establish a literary award for children's literature that reflects the Latino culture and to elevate the award’s prestige to the level of the Newberry or Caldecott awards by 2010. Additionally, the ALA will offer model programs for libraries on how to provide excellent service to the Hispanic community and initiate an outreach campaign to show other organizations how to create similar model programs.

American Association of Museums (AAM). The American Association of Museums is committed to closing the achievement gap by encouraging museums to meet the needs of Hispanic students by providing teacher training, using technology to link to schools with high Hispanic populations, and making curriculum materials available online. AAM will also create a link on its website to provide information on this outreach campaign, publicize the site in its publications, and seek promising practices from museums to highlight on the site and in its publications.

Reach Out and Read. Reach Out and Read, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing parents with information on the importance of language development and literacy during routine well-baby check-ups, will initiate a major outreach campaign to migrant families.

National PTA and the Hispanic Radio Network. The 6.5 million member National PTA and the Hispanic Radio Network, with 100 affiliate stations in the United States, Puerto Rico and Latin America, announce a new partnership to produce a series of one-minute radio programs that will highlight the positive effects of parental participation on student academic achievement, offer ideas to parents on how to promote safe, effective, community-centered schools, and identify resources targeted to Spanish-speaking parents.


Proctor & Gamble. Proctor & Gamble has contributed $50,000 to the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans for the collaborative development and distribution of an "information kit for organizers" to support Latino parents' efforts to secure a quality education for their children. The information kit will be developed in both English and Spanish and will address the following topics: Parents as First Teachers, A Quality Education for All, Heading Towards College, and Making It Happen in Your Community.

The Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities Partnership. HACU has partnered with the St. Paul Companies, State Farm Insurance Companies, and the Target Corporation, to initiate a corporate internship program for Hispanic college students throughout the Unites States, modeled after its successful federal government internship program which places over 500 interns annually.

Scholastic, Inc., Univision and The National Latino Children's Institute. Scholastic, Univision and The National Latino Children's Institute will lead a nationally focused and locally targeted public awareness campaign entitled "Discover the Excitement of Reading" to support Latino families and caregivers in raising their young children's literacy skills and overall student achievement by nurturing and cultivating the love of reading and storytelling; making quality, affordable children's books available to Latino children; encouraging and promoting new Latino authors; and increasing the number of culturally appropriate materials available for Latino children.

Lightspan, Inc. and The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Lightspan and HUD will team up to provide educational technology resources to HUD’s over 600 Neighborhood Networks centers in public and assisted housing communities across the country. To launch this national partnership, Lightspan will provide assistance and customize the on-line content to meet the needs of the residents at 10 Neighborhood Network centers in Hispanic communities. Governor Thomas R. Carper of Delaware is taking the lead in encouraging and facilitating this dynamic partnership in two of the State's HUD Neighborhood Networks.

Washington Mutual, Inc. Washington Mutual Inc., has committed to expand its high school internship program from 6 to 8 states. This program provides 11th and 12th grade students with a two-year internship opportunity consisting of part-time employment in the bank's financial centers and 80 hours of instruction in workforce preparation and consumer education (e.g. interview techniques, dress code, team work, work place ethics, time management, cultural diversity, conflict resolution, money management). Over the past 26 years, the program has served over 37,000 high school students, including 11,000 Hispanic students.

Sears, Roebuck and Co. Sears, Roebuck and Co. will implement a pilot internship/mentoring program in Miami and Los Angeles. The Sears Future Leaders program will target Hispanic high school juniors and seniors who have demonstrated strong academic performance and leadership potential. Participating students will be guaranteed part-time jobs at Sears during holidays and summer breaks for as long as they maintain at least a "C" average in school. They also will be matched up with manager-level volunteer mentors, who will guide the students in learning business literacy and professional conduct. Interns who meet policy guidelines will be offered tuition reimbursement for college.

Discovery Communications, Inc. Discovery en Espanol (DEN) will create five public service announcements (PSAs) that will be run on the channel regularly for a year beginning in October, 2000, and distributed through any other available medium. Each PSA will focus on one of the five national Hispanic Education goals announced by the President at the White House Strategy Session on June 15th. Discovery en Espanol, in partnership with cable operators across the country, will create versions of the PSAs to air in local communities. Discovery en Espanol is a digital channel owned and operated by Discovery Communications, Inc.


Council of Economic Advisers' Report. The President's Council of Economic Advisers will release a report entitled, "Educational Attainment and Success in the New Economy: An Analysis of Challenges for Improving Hispanic Students’ Achievement." The report documents the gaps in educational outcomes for Hispanics and the importance from both an individual and national perspective of improving Hispanic students' educational achievement. In addition, the CEA's report focuses on the need for greater representation of Hispanics in the rapidly growing information technology sector.

Department of Agriculture (USDA). In 2001, the U.S. Department of Agriculture will establish a scholarship program to increase the number of students entering and graduating from 2- and 4-year Hispanic Serving Institutions (HISs) and encourage students to pursue careers in the U.S. food and agriculture sector. The scholarship will cover educational expenses for students earning degrees ranging from an Associate of Arts through a doctorate. Following graduation, the scholarship recipients must work at USDA for one year for each year of financial assistance received. The program, which will be called the National Hispanic Serving Institutions Scholars Program, will serve up to 30 students during its first year of funding.

Department of Commerce (DOC)

  • Faculty Exchange with Hispanic Serving Colleges and Universities. The Department of Commerce recently entered into agreements with three Hispanic Serving Institutions, covering 49,000 Hispanic students. The agreements will result in professional exchange programs between DOC executives and HSI faculty, make DOC's world-renowned scientists available to the HSIs as guest lecturers, and permit the Department to enhance its efforts to recruit HSI graduates for DOC employment. In September, DOC will sponsor a mini-conference for HSI presidents, leaders of the Hispanic community, and DOC executives to promote communications among the entities' executives and facilitate progress on the implementation of the MOUs.

  • Directions 2000 Conference. On September 21-22, 2000, the Department of Commerce will sponsor a conference for Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) to promote minority participation in DOC grants and other financial assistance programs. Over 190 Minority Serving Institutions of higher learning, including a substantial number of HSIs, will be invited to participate in the conference.

Department of Defense (DOD). The Department of Defense will expand its student teaching internship program to increase the number of Hispanic educators in overseas schools, which serve family members of military personnel. The Department has entered into five new partnerships with Hispanic Serving Institutions and will provide round-trip travel expenses to entice exceptional students who are majoring in education at those colleges and universities to complete their student teaching internships in DoD schools overseas.

Department of Education (DoEd)

  • National Goals and Benchmarks for the Next Decade. The U.S. Department of Education will release “Key Indicators of Hispanic Student Achievement: National Goals and Benchmarks for the Next Decade," which provides national goals to guide federal, state, and local educators, policy makers, and community leaders in improving educational access and quality for Hispanic students. This publication also provides indicators of progress in the following areas for schools, communities and states to follow: early childhood education, learning English, closing achievement gaps and the dropout rate, and increasing college completion.

  • The "Idea Book". DoEd is releasing "Helping Hispanic Students Reach High Academic Standards: An Idea Book," which highlights promising strategies used by schools and communities to help Hispanic students succeed in learning, gaining productive employment, and becoming responsible citizens. The "Idea Book" was developed by the U.S. Department of Education as a guide to support schools and communities in designing successful programs that promote high academic achievement among Hispanic students, including using federal funds. The Department will send the Idea Book to the top 100 school districts with the fastest growing Hispanic student populations.

  • Assisting School Districts with Rapidly Growing Hispanic Populations. DoEd, in partnership with the National Association of Bilingual Education, will launch a series of workshops for school districts on strategies for training teachers to address linguistic and cultural diversity in the classroom, effective bilingual education programs, teaching reading to English language learners, and using community-wide resources to meet the needs of new students and their families. The Department will also provide technical assistance for school superintendents and principals, who work in communities that have recently experienced a large increase in Hispanic students, on building partnerships to improve academic performance and increase high school completion rates.

  • New Grants To Support Hispanic Serving Colleges and Universities. DoEd's Hispanic-Serving Institutions Program will provide $25.8 million for 76 new development grants to enable eligible Hispanic-serving institutions of higher education expand their capacity to serve Hispanic students and other low-income individuals. The HSIs may use the funds for faculty development, administrative management, and improvement of academic programs, facilities and student services. Hispanic Serving Institutions enroll the majority of all Hispanic students nationally and also provide access for a large number of other disadvantaged students.

  • Title I Outreach Campaign. DoEd will launch an expansive outreach effort to provide more and higher quality services to very young Hispanic children through Title I pre-school programs. The Department will write to all local school districts, encouraging them to use Title I funds for preschool, urging schools to reach out to Hispanic families, and explaining the flexibility in Title I schoolwide programs in selecting participants and in providing services to Hispanic children and their parents. In addition, the Department will prepare policy guidance on the use of Title I funds for preschools with examples of high quality programs serving large numbers of Hispanic preschoolers.

  • Outreach Campaign with the National PTA. Hispanic families, like all others, want their children to achieve high standards and be successful in school. In partnership, the Department of Education and the National PTA will distribute "Vamos Juntos a la Escuela" (Let’s Go to School Together), a videotape for Spanish-speaking families and the schools and organizations that serve them. The tape, which will go to PTAs nationwide serving schools with significant populations of Hispanic students, provides basic suggestions about helping children succeed in school, covering subjects such as parent involvement in education, early childhood, reading and mathematics, and preparing young people for college.

Department of Energy (DOE). For FY 2001, the Department of Energy's Community College Institute (CCI) has committed to quadruple the size of its summer "technical and research" internship program for community college students studying mathematics, science, or other technical subjects. The Department will enhance its internship program by providing additional incentives for interns who agree to mentor other students when they return to their community college after their internships, including reimbursements for textbooks and membership fees and travel expenses to meetings of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) . The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration is working in partnership with the Hispanic community to develop and implement an initiative called !!SOY UNICA!! SOY LATINA!! !!I’M UNIQUE!! SOY LATINA!!, a national, comprehensive, multimedia bilingual campaign geared for Hispanics/Latinas age 9 to 14. The initiative will help young girls to build positive self-esteem in order to prevent drug use, and avoid the harmful consequences of emotional and behavioral problems.

HHS, HUD, and the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans. The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans will work together to provide English and Spanish language materials and educational forums to parents of young children through HUD's Neighborhood Networks and other community-based programs. The parents will receive information on early brain development research, parenting tips, how to access child care subsidies and tax credits, how to choose a child care center, what Head Start has to offer, and other family supports. Starting this summer, this effort will be piloted in six locations across the country serving Latino communities.

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