Community Programs

The Santa Barbara Education Foundation serves as a Fiscal Sponsor for many valuable programs in the community of Santa Barbara. To discuss investing in these community programs, please call Margie Yahyavi, Executive Director, at (805) 284-9125.

THE ACADEMY FOR SUCCESS (est. 2008):  Academy for Success offers personal, individualized attention to at-risk students who have been identified as having the potential to improve, based on teacher and counselor referrals. Students take core classes as a group replicating a “family” structure. Individual and group therapy is available to help students learn new responses and break cycles of destructive behavior. The program expanded to all three campuses in the fall of 2015. 100% of the students in The Academy have graduated and gone on to college, trade school, or employment.

AVID (est. 2010): AVID is a 4th-12th grade program that works to prepare students for four-year college eligibility. It has a proven track record in bringing out the best in students, and in closing the achievement gap. AVID stands for Advancement Via Individual Determination.

BRAVO! (est. 2007):  A district-sponsored after school elementary music program that is open to students with at least one year of experience on a band or orchestra instrument. Santa Barbara Education Foundation is serving as the fiscal sponsor for the funding of the trombone teacher’s position.

CALIFORNIA OUTREACH THROUGH RECREATION AND EDUCATION (CORE) (est. 2008):  An intervention program that combines an academic and behavioral approach for a targeted group of the most at-risk students at SBJHS. Class time is structured so that the students learn organization and planning skills, receive one on one academic tutoring, receive help with their homework, and have an outlet to discuss pertinent life situation issues. When CORE students fulfill the program’s scholastic and behavior requirements, they are rewarded with adventure-based trips that provide experiential learning.

COMMUNITY OF SCHOOLS (est. 2011):  Santa Barbara Unified School District’s Community of Schools is focused on vision, mission, and core values to close the achievement gap and do whatever it takes to improve all children’s chance at success in life from birth to college graduation. Westside neighborhood schools—Harding University Partnership School, McKinley Elementary, La Cumbre Junior High, San Marcos High School—and Eastside neighborhood schools—Cleveland Elementary, Franklin Elementary, Santa Barbara Junior High, Santa Barbara High School—are partnering with community service providers and stakeholders to support children and their families. The Community of Schools Project aims to change outcomes for children by addressing five focus areas: Early Childhood Education and Kindergarten Readiness; Parent Education, Engagement and Leadership; Community School Model; College Readiness; and Collective Impact. To learn more, visit

  • PROGRAM FOR EFFECTIVE ACCESS TO COLLEGE (PEAC) (est. 2011): A Community of Schools program, PEAC was formed in response to the number of Latino students who were successful in elementary school, but floundered in middle and high school due to a number of reasons, such as a lack of peer support in high school and limited resources at home. The program is comprised of small cohorts of students receiving additional support and mentorship. This ensures students graduate from high school and are prepared for college entry. 100% of participants have graduated from high school.

DYSLEXIA PROJECT: The Dyslexia Project promotes dyslexia awareness, provides families with resource information, and actively keeps SBUSD’s administration abreast of current efforts and new developments.

INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE WORLD SCHOOL (est. 2004): The International Baccalaureate World School at Dos Pueblos High School is a two year, humanities based curriculum for Juniors and Seniors. It intends to provide motivated students with rigorous, honors level, internationally based curriculum and course work.

NICK RAIL MUSIC TRUST (est. 1989): This trust raises funds for the purchase of needed instruments as expressed by the schools, particularly junior high and high school programs.

THE PARENT PROJECT—CHANGING DESTRUCTIVE BEHAVIOR IN ADOLESCENTS (est. 2006):  The Parent Project facilitates parent-adolescent communication training that helps strengthen relationships between elementary/junior high students and their families. Hundreds of parents graduating from the program have reduced family conflict, improved their child’s school performance, and changed destructive behaviors. To learn more, visit

PARENT RESOURCE CENTER (est. 2013): Where do parents go when they want to learn more about their child’s learning challenges? Trouble reading? Processing issues? From learning differences to behavior issues, mental health concerns to parenting information, autism spectrum to ADHD, the Parent Resource Center helps navigate these concerns. Open since May 2013, the Parent Resource Center offers a lending library of books, journals, videos, and articles on a wide array of special education-related subjects for students, parents, educators, and community members.

PARENTS UNITED/PADRES UNIDOS (est. 2007): Padres Unidos delivers the Padres Adelante parent-school partnership course to Spanish-speaking parents at schools throughout the District. Spanish-speaking parents often lack awareness of the “how” to get involved in helping their child succeed in school. The Padres Adelante course gives them those tools, equipping parents to become active and engaged partners between home and school.

QUETZAL ENTREPRENEURIAL MARKET GARDEN PROJECT (est. 2014):  Founded in 2014, The Quetzal program was designed to help at-risk youth who struggle with attendance, credit deficiency, and expulsion. The Quetzal Entrepreneurial Market Garden Project is an afternoon horticulture program that provides hands-on work training and educational experiences for students who attend La Cuesta Continuation High School in the Santa Barbara Unified School District. To learn more, visit the Healing Grounds Nursery web site.

TECHSPLORATION (est. 2011): Techsploration was created with one thing in mind: exposing young minds to the wonder of STEM at a young age to build a foundation for future educational success. Techsploration uses kinesthetic activities to engage participants with three different programs: Techsploration Day, a school wide event; Techsploration Kids, an after-school program; and Techsploration Workshop, a weekly program.

SANTA BARBARA COUNTY ALLIANCE FOR ARTS EDUCATION (est. 2014): The Santa Barbara County Alliance for Arts Education is a coalition that was formed to advocate for high quality arts education in the schools. SBCAAE provided the initial fundraising effort to support the launch of a Visual and Performing Arts Director position with the District. The position was established in August of 2015.

WHAT IS LOVE (est. 2010):  Dating violence is not just dangerous and sometimes lethal, but teens who experience abuse in a relationship exhibit higher rates of violence, school drop-out rates, drug abuse, high-risk sexual behavior, and suicide. One in three teens in Santa Barbara County report experiencing dating abuse and most never ask for help. What Is LOVE addresses the crisis with an in-school dating violence prevention program at all Santa Barbara secondary schools. Using restorative justice philosophy, innovative outreach, the power of storytelling, and a teen-driven awareness campaign, What Is LOVE works with teens ages 13-18, school staff, and parents. Participants in the What Is LOVE program learn how to identify and avoid abusive behavior, how abusive relationships can create long-lasting harm, and how to ask for help. To learn more about What is LOVE, visit

YOUTH VIOLENCE INTERVENTION AND PREVENTION PROGRAM (est. 2009):  This program works with students at Santa Barbara, San Marcos, and Dos Pueblos High Schools who have been identified by teachers and principals as disruptive, at risk, and/or underachieving students suspected of gang involvement. The primary goal of the program is to prevent our students from engaging in violence on and off campus by helping them develop stronger attachments to their school, families, and community. Field trips to universities have inspired the students to finish high school and attend college.



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