Graduation Coach 2017-03-23T15:14:36+00:00

Graduation Coach Program

Led by United Way of Stanislaus County in partnership with Center for Human Services.

Center for Human Services is proud to partner with United Way of Stanislaus County on the Graduation Coach Program. Now in its 4th year, the program has 7 Graduation Coaches at 5 school sites.

Initially, United Way of Stanislaus County underwent a 1 year research process to determine how they could contribute to increasing the graduation rate in Stanislaus County. Based on their findings and with the support of the research, United Way of Stanislaus County decided to target student engagement at the 7th grade level. Transitions in their school environment and workload, accompanied by social turmoil, hormones and many other challenges make 7th grade a challenging time where many students struggle academically as well.

The Graduation Coach Program uses an evidence-based k-12 intervention model targeting students who are showing signs of disengagement with school and with learning, making them at risk for dropping out of school. 

Graduation Coaches use the Check and Connect intervention model to work closely with students and school personal to help students overcome their barriers to academic success. The Coach checks-in with students through one-on-one and small group sessions. They also bridge communication between parents and school through regular contact with parents. Graduation Coaches, students, parents and school staff work together to provide personalized interventions and resources that will support the students’ academic achievement and success in school.  With guidance from the Graduation Coaches, the goal is to increase student’s engagement with school and learning which is usually reflected by improved attendance, reduced behavioral problems, better grades, and increased GPA. Most importantly, they will learn life skills, build self-esteem and develop perseverance needed to succeed in 8th grade and throughout high school.

Currently the program is offered at Creekside Middle School and Walnut Grove in Patterson, Waterford Junior High, and Salida Middle School. In 2015-16 school year the program expanded into the high school at Downey High where the transition to 9th grade has also proven to be a critical time of transition for youth who are struggling academically.


Must be showing indications of disengagement with school/ learning and in 7th/8th grade at Creekside Middle School, Walnut Grove K-8 Elementary, Waterford Junior High, Salida Middle School or in 9th /10th grade at Downey High School.



For more information contact:

Rhonda Dahlgren
Program Coordinator
(209) 526-1476 ext. 155
FAX: (209) 526-0908

Learn more about United Way of Stanislaus County and their education initiative.