County funding supports after-school child care in Mountain View and beyond
Santa Clara County and the YMCA of Silicon Valley are teaming up to help families access after-school child care. The county is funding nearly six times the number of child care scholarships to families this school year compared to last, according to a statement from Fifth District County Supervisor Joe Simitian's office.
The increase in funding is “particularly timely,” said Simitian in the statement, “with so many working parents still struggling financially post-pandemic, and with growing numbers of youngsters enrolled in transitional kindergarten programs.”
With the expansion of transitional kindergarten requirements under state law, more kids under age five are eligible for transitional kindergarten this school year. This means that working parents and caregivers “have had to find safe, stable, and developmentally appropriate after school care for children so they can focus on employment and housing stability,” the statement said.
“Transitional kindergarten helps get kids ready to learn and thrive throughout their academic futures,” Simitian said in the statement. “Pairing it with a supportive after school program like the Y After School Program – where learning extends beyond the classroom – helps our most vulnerable kids succeed.”
According to the statement, the YMCA’s after school programs “have a deep and deliberate integration with partner schools where they share information about program attendance, academics and social and emotional learning development.”
This allows school districts, principals and teachers to more easily refer students and families who need support to YMCA programs.
“Simitian recently had a chance to check in on a Y After School classroom at Theuerkauf Elementary School in Mountain View, where some of the youngsters were attending with support from the County’s scholarship funding,” the statement said.
“It was great to see these kids lively, engaged, learning and laughing,” Simitian said, according to the statement. “A quality program.”
Learn more about the YMCA and its after-school childcare programs here.
Bay Area artists, empowered by nonprofit ArtLifting, display work at local Bank of America locations
Artwork by disabled and housing insecure artists is currently on display at Bank of America branches in Mountain View and San Mateo, in partnership with ArtLifting. The organization seeks to empower disadvantaged artists by giving them “the chance to secure their own income through the sale of original paintings, prints, and products,” ArtLifting’s website states.
“Local artist Mike Gosbee’s work can be viewed at 384 San Antonio Road in the Mountain View bank location, or you can see Elizabeth Gauss’ work at 3150 Campus Drive in the San Mateo location,” a statement said. “Through ArtLifting, proceeds from sales help artists.”
The public is also invited to view the artwork on display or purchase prints online at artlifting.com.
“Mike Gosbee describes being inspired by the Dada art movement and has a passion for finding the beauty in randomness, chance configurations, and within the darkness that can often go unnoticed,” the statement said of the artist whose work is on display in Mountain View. “Mike is a very tactile artist, he enjoys working with his hands whether he is creating ceramics, collage, ripping or cutting paper, and then rearranging it in a way that makes sense to him.”
Gosbee creates his art as a part of Hospitality House, “an agency that serves adults in San Francisco living with homelessness and poverty, which he describes as ‘my emotional and creative support,’” the statement said.
Local woman becomes first Black and deaf graduate from prestigious Goldman Sachs business program
A local woman made history recently by becoming the first Black and deaf graduate from Goldman Sachs’ One Million Black Women: Black in Business program.
The program empowered Mountain View local Kei-Che Randle to build a business model for her advocacy platform, STEPS by Kei-Che, which she founded “to showcase the evolution and enhancement of people learning American Sign language through gospel, contemporary, pop, and hip hop music,” a statement from Cochlear said.
Randle was born with hearing loss, according to the statement. Now 32 years old, she was “inspired by her daughter to receive a hybrid cochlear implant in 2014, which she now calls life-changing,” the statement said.
“I realized that I want to be able to connect to her world in different ways and share meaningful experiences,” Randle said, according to the statement. “She is hearing and although I’ll never fully understand, we have bonded in many ways through learning each other's language and education about Deaf culture.”
Now, Randle is working to “bridge the gap between deaf and hearing communities by learning, encouraging, rebuilding confidence and celebrating each other’s languages,” the statement said. Randle is also a teacher of the deaf at the Oakland Unified School District and volunteers for the Bay Area Black Deaf Advocates.