Prepare children to succeed

When children succeed, our whole community succeeds. United Way is committed to helping all children reach their potential through our partner programs and initiatives that support parents and provide safe and nurturing environments that help bolster academics, build leadership skills and promote social well-being.


United 4 Learning

The United Way of Crookston has supported the United4Learning program by dedicating funding to serve students in grades K-6 in an after school reading program at Washington and Highland Elementary Schools. The goal of United4Learning is to build literacy skills with students by giving them the “gift of time” to develop those skills that will help them become successful readers and thinkers. 

Last year, 80% of the first graders at Washington School who attended United4Learning, started the school year in need of reading intervention but by spring were meeting or exceeding grade level expectations. Teachers reported many gains, across grade levels, in the students attending United4Learning. Recently, Highland School was recognized as a “Celebration Eligible” school for student growth in reading.     


Success in reading has been the intended goal of United4Learning but the results of this program go beyond reading instruction.  United4Learning has become a safe place and fun after school activity for students who attend.  Students who participate are excited about learning and develop improved work habits and social skills among peers.  Washington and Highland Schools have reported less behavior incidences during the school day with students who attend United4Learning after school. 

true stories

Here are some stories about the students who attend United4Learning

Students enjoy attending our after school reading program, United4Learning, so much that school attendance has improved.  Several students have stated they do not want to be absent from school because they would then miss United4Learning.  A third grader at Highland School stayed home because they were not feeling well in the morning but later came to school because they did not want to miss United4Learning.

In Kindergarten, teachers have reported that students who are not part of the United4Learning after school reading program have asked if they can stay after school and go to this program and have said, “Why don’t we get to go”?

Parents have called the schools wanting their children to be part of the program.  Even parents of students who are reading at grade level, and not eligible for the program, because they hear from students attending how much fun it is.

In the fall, a first grade student was performing below grade level in reading and did not have the confidence to read on her own.  She wanted the instructional aides to read to her instead.  Throughout the year, this first grader’s confidence grew with the support of United4Learning and by spring, she was reading on her own at grade level.  Her teacher reported that during “free choice time” when students could choose anything they wanted to do around the classroom, she chose to read.  One day she asked if she could read to her class for “Show and Tell”.  She was very proud of herself and now has a love for learning that will last a lifetime.