New FNE Center Brings Opportunities to Families

Picture of Tom

Dear Team DPS,

Yesterday, I attended the grand opening of our second Mile High United Way Center for Family Opportunity (CFO), located at McGlone Academy in the Montbello neighborhood of Far Northeast Denver. When I walked into McGlone from the cold and snowy evening, I was immersed in a warm and bustling community with the multiple generations of family members that the CFO will serve.

The CFO offers free services to community members, age 16 and older, to help find a job, improve their financial planning skills, access mental health counseling and support their child’s learning — all in a convenient, school-based location. The center also provides free childcare while family members are attending classes. As Tameka Brigham, our Chief of Family and Community Engagement, observed during the event, “When we serve the family, we serve the child.”

This innovative, multi-generational program helps us work toward many of our goals in the Denver Plan 2020, our district’s strategic plan. Located right in the community it serves, the CFO will help us reach our goal of ensuring that there are Great Schools in Every Neighborhood. It helps DPS support the Whole Child by providing opportunities for family counseling, and encourages College and Career Readiness through the center’s GED classes, interview preparation and workforce training. The CFO also provides families with the tools they need to help their children build a solid Foundation for Success through early learning and literacy supports.

We know the CFO model can produce powerful results for McGlone’s families and the wider community — we’ve seen the tremendous success of our first location in Southwest Denver at College View Elementary School.

When we first talked about bringing a CFO to McGlone Academy two years ago, it was just a dream in principal Sara Gips-Goodall’s heart. As she shared with the community yesterday, “Our vision for the CFO was driven by our love and commitment to the Montbello neighborhood, Montbello kids and Montbello families.”

The grand opening of the CFO at McGlone represented the efforts, hard work and dreams of so many people in our community. We are particularly grateful for the generous support and partnership of Mile High United Way, the Denver Office of Economic Development and the DPS Foundation. We firmly believe that strong family, school and community partnerships will result in better academic outcomes and brighter futures for our kids.