The taxpayer-funded STEP UP program in Portland Public Schools targets 8th and 9th graders who are at risk of dropping out. Groups of kids are paired with adult advocates who they meet with after school four days a week, in addition to receiving tutoring. The program has been proven to help keep kids in school and to improve their grades. It's mostly funded by the Portland Children's Investment Fund, a taxpayer levy that raises about $10 million annually for children's progams. The fund pays for programs in three areas -- after-school and mentoring, early childhood education and prevention of child abuse and neglect.
Tags: Children, preschool, Therapy