students at table

About Us

Urgency & Opportunity

“Ensuring the health and well-being of children in the U.S. has never been more critical to the nation’s economic and political future. The massive Baby Boom generation is aging and retiring at the same time that birth rates are declining…Beyond our moral obligation to care for children for their own sake, our future economy, our standard of living, and our place as a leader in the world demand that children become our highest priority."

The New Importance of Children in America

2018 CA Children's Report Card

Kids in Common

California is home to 9.1 million children ages birth to 18 years old. Of those children:

  • 4.4 million, or nearly half, live in immigrant family

  • 2 million, or more than 1 in 5 children, live in poverty

  • 5% of children living below the Federal Poverty Level live in immigrant families

  • 1 in every 2 children, or 51%, are Latino

  • 36% of Latino children live in poverty

  • 22% of California children are English Learners (EL)

  • 84% of EL students are Spanish speakers

School Readiness - Learning Begins at Birth

Early experiences shape a child's brain development for future learning, behavior and success. Without that strong foundation, children - especially low-income children - will be behind from the start.

  • Only 47% of three and four-year-olds are enrolled in preschool and more than 33,000 four-year-olds from low-income households are unserved

  • Only 13% of low-incom children are enrolled in high quality preschools

  • 60% of Latino three to five-year-olds comprise the largest percentage of children without preschool

Reading and Math

Proficient readers are more likely to graduate from high school, and go to college. Those who fall behind in the early grades often stay behind. California Department of Education report the 2017 Smarter Balanced results:

  • 6 out of 10 Latino and African American children are not on grade level in English with more than 7 out of 10 Latino and 8 out of 10 African American children are not on grade level in Math

  • Only 31% of African-Americans and 37% of Latino students met or exceeded standards for English Language Arts compared with 76% of Asian and 64% of white students

  • Only 21% of California Economically Disadvantaged children Meet or Exceed Grade-Level Standards in Math versus 52% of Non Economically Disadvantaged

Post-Secondary Success

GreatSchools 2017 Report Reveals a Tale of Two School Systems in California. This gap has profound implications for the economic divide that grips our region and nation.

  • High schools are not preparing all students for eligibility at the University of California (UC) or California State University (CSU) systems

  • Only 41% of students graduate from a school where the majority of students are eligible for UC/CSU enrollment

  • Only 22% of African American and 19% of Hispanic students attend a school where the majority of graduates in their racial group are UC/CSU eligible, compared to 58% of white and 91% of Asian students

  • Only 9% of low-income students will complete college compared with 77% of affluent students

Urgency Leads to Opportunity

The urgent needs present us with an OPPORTUNITY to deliver high quality, innovative, and comprehensive programs where we honor, listen and learn together as a community to ensure that we don’t leave behind another generation of children and youth.

fei logo

ph default text

We're Here to Help!

 Family Engagement Institute


 Student Resource Center, Building 5400 Room 5420