The Potential Project has returned for a fourth straight year with the continued aim of empowering West Contra Costa Unified School District (WCCUSD) students to enact positive changes in their schools with help from $500 grants.
The application period for those grants has opened for youth teams of any grade who attend WCCUSD affiliated schools, according to Pastor Dave Clark of Living Hope Neighborhood Church in Richmond, which organizes the annual program. The teams can be groups of two students or whole classrooms. The deadline is Monday, Jan. 28, Clark said. To apply, visit ThePotentialProject.org.
While most decisions affecting students are made by adults, the Potential Project encourages students to decide what can be done to improve their school. The program challenges students to develop ways to accomplish goals listed in WCCUSD’s Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP), which aims to improve student outcomes.
Last year, the Potential Project received 66 applications, far greater than the previous year’s 24 applications and the inaugural year’s 10. Grant ideas have varied widely. One surveyed students on what books they would read, then outfitted the school’s library with those kinds of books at bargain prices. Another grant was used for food drive and fundraiser.
“The Potential Project tries to create a platform where the student voice is heard and where student ideas are celebrated and also launched into implementation in order to create the change in the school culture that they desire to see,” Clark said.