SparkPoint Community Schools (SPCS), a program of United Way Bay Area, helps families gain a stable financial footing while simultaneously supporting students' well-being and academic success. Traditionally, financial education has not been a part of the community schools model; programs focused on youth services and did not offer opportunities for parents to increase their own education or job skills. The SPCS model uses a two-generation approach – involving both youth and their parents – to shift the paradigm by strengthening whole families.
In the 2016-17 program year, Public Profit undertook a mixed methods approach to evaluating SPCS program activities at the initiative's six sites. We used client interviews, staff interviews, participant surveys, administrative data, and staff focus groups to explore implementation fidelity, participation patterns, household economic improvement, and child academic improvement.