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The beginning of our journey….

Carolyn and Steve Roskamp

Photo credit NEXTGEN Magazine

In 2017, Carolyn and Steve Roskamp became interested in finding a solution to a problem. Steve recalls:

“When I learned from a funder in Sarasota County that 30% of students in Sarasota were reading below grade level, I was stunned. He went on to tell me that Manatee County’s numbers were worse. I could not believe Manatee County had a staggering 50% of its students reading below grade level expectations.”

Steve and his wife Carolyn wanted to understand the underlying difference between Title I schools in Sarasota and Title I schools just a 30-minute drive to the north in Manatee County. These were similar kids in similar demographics. The difference, the Roskamp’s found, was a dedicated focus on four-year-olds. Thus, Soar in 4 was born in Manatee County. The Soar in 4 mission is to ensure children from families of all races, ethnicities, incomes, abilities, and languages have the opportunities and support they need for success in school and beyond. And to create a network of parents, community organizations, and neighborhood businesses that plan and carry out activities and opportunities that support young children’s healthy growth, development and school readiness.

Our Goals

Goal 1

 100% of the Soar in 4 participants will be proficient in reading by the end of 3rd grade. This is in alignment with the goals for the Campaign for Grade Level Reading.

Goal 2

● We have grown to serve 15 Title I elementary schools and we will continue to grow each year throughout the neighborhood communities to embrace early learning centers and family support agencies. 

Goal 3

● To launch an on-the-ground effort that engages parents as their children’s first teachers and as neighborhood-wide change agents for school readiness.

Goal 4

● We will document our processes and procedures in order to monitor our movement toward achieving our goals, ensure our students’ and families’ needs are being met, and share our successes with others as they replicate our efforts in their communities.

Our Mission

The Soar in 4 mission is to ensure children from families of all races, ethnicities, incomes, abilities, and languages have the opportunities and support they need for success in school and beyond. And to create a network of parents, community organizations, and neighborhood businesses that plan and carry out activities and opportunities that support young children’s healthy growth, development and school readiness.

Our Research

SCOPE Community Conversations in Three Attendance Zones of Manatee County Title I Schools

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Summer 2017 Soar in 4 Data

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Soar in 4 Data

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Soar in 4 VPK Data

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2018 Summer Soar in 4 Data

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