SJ Learns Impact

2019/05 Mayor Sam Liccardo to Announce New SJ Learns @ Cesar Chavez Elementary School

The Program

San José Learns provides high-quality out of school time programs to students in grades TK-3 from low-income communities, where approximately half of third-graders are not proficient in English language arts/reading and mathematics.

Through an annual grant program administered by the Library Foundation, SJ Learns provides school districts with resources that leverage their own budgets and those of their program providers to ensure positive learning outcomes and increase the number of at-risk children who attend high-quality out of school programs.

Learn more about the program history

The Need

Established by Mayor Sam Liccardo in 2015, San José Learns is designed to bridge the achievement gap for students in low-income communities, where nearly half of third graders are not proficient in English Language Arts, Reading, and Math.

The divide is particularly pronounced for San José’s students of color, with 60% percent of black third graders and 75% of Latinx third graders testing below grade level. Compounding the dilemma, nearly 5,000 students do not have access to free, high quality, school-based extended learning programs. With children spending less than 20% of their time in the classroom, these programs provide crucial support for students who are struggling academically.

Unfortunately, many low-income families cannot afford fee-based alternatives, especially during the current health and economic crisis. SJ Learns gives school districts the resources to leverage their own budgets and outside program providers to provide free programs that improve learning outcomes for at-risk students in grades TK-3.

The Impact

Since its inception, SJ Learns has provided in excess of $6 million to fund after school and summer enrichment programs and give students a safe and supportive space to thrive. During the 2019-2020 academic year, SJ Learns programs served 883 students, 54% of them English Learners and 73% Latinx.

By 2021, the program is projected to serve more than 3,400 students from schools in low-income and underserved neighborhoods throughout San José, including Alum Rock Union, Franklin-McKinley, and Luther Burbank School Districts. This will take continued investment by the City and its many partners, including the San José Public Library Foundation, which administers the SJ Learns grants program.

Read more in the latest SJ Learns Executive Summaries

SJ-Learns-2019-20-Academic-Growth

Historically, SJ Learns has awarded between $62,000 and $376,000 per year to grantees to support summer and academic
year expanded learning programs. Beginning in 2019-2020, LEAs were given the option to apply for two-year grants.

Grants Program

Since 2015, $6.1 million in grants have been awarded through SJ Learns to Local Education Agencies (“LEAs”) serving San José students. Grants are administered by the Library Foundation, with the San José Public Library’s Education Team providing leadership for the RFP and all related administrative, programmatic, and evaluation activities. The grant period begins in the summer and continues through the academic year.

Historically, SJ Learns has awarded between $33,000 and $700,000 per year to grantees to support summer and academic year expanded learning programs. Beginning in 2019-2020, LEAs were given the option to apply for two-year grants.

SJ Learns Grant Summer 2022 and AY 2022-2023 Grantees and Partners

Alum Rock Union School District with Think Together 

Campbell Union School District 

Franklin-McKinley School District with Catholic Charities

Luther Burbank School District 

Evergreen Elementary School District with YMCA 

Rocketship Public School District with YMCA 

Santa Clara County Office of Education with Bay Area Tutoring Association 

SJ Learns Grant Summer 2021 and AY 2022-2021 Grantees and Partners

Alum Rock Union School District

Campbell Union School District

Franklin-McKinley School District

Luther Bank School District

Mount Pleasant School District

Rocketship Public Schools

SJ Learns Special Funding Opportunity for AY 2021-2022

Alum Rock Union School District

Franklin-McKinley School District

Luther Burbank School District

Mount Pleasant School District

Santa Clara County of Education

SJ Learns Grant 2020

Franklin-McKinley School District

Luther Burbank School District

Mount Pleasant School District 

Past Grantees 2015-2019

Alum Rock Union Elementary School District

Campbell Union School District

Evergreen Elementary School District

Franklin-McKinley School District

Moreland School District

Mount Pleasant School District

Oak Grove School District

Rocketship Public Schools

San José Unified School District

Major Funders