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How We Began

History and Milestones
  • January 2013
    • United Way of Greenville County, through a grant from United Way Worldwide, convened a Middle Grades Challenge Team which brought nonprofit and education stakeholders together to consider the issue of middle grades student success. The team’s work resulted in:
      • A commitment from Greenville County Schools to implement an evidence-based Early Warning and Response System in schools that would include a way to identify students at risk of dropping out in real time; and
      • A commitment from United Way of Greenville County to implement a “place-based” initiative in middle schools in the White Horse community utilizing a collective impact approach.
  • Spring/Fall 2014
    • In Spring 2014, using the knowledge and evidence gathered from the work of the Middle Grades Challenge Team; United Way of Greenville County applied for and received a Social Innovation Fund (SIF) grant from the Federal Corporation for National and Community Service. Several key stakeholders agreed early on to partner with United Way in the application, including Greenville County Schools, the Riley Institute at Furman University, and funders including the Community Foundation of Greenville County and Hollingsworth Funds.  The Social Innovation Fund awarded the $3 million grant to United Way of Greenville County in the Fall of 2014, which was one of only seven grants awarded nationwide that year. The initiative was aptly named the “Middle Grades Success Initiative.”
  • October 2014–2015
    • In April 2015, after a lengthy Request for Proposals, application, and evaluation process, subgrants were awarded to Building Educated Leaders for Life, Communities In Schools of Greenville, Greenville County Schools, the Greenville Health System, and Public Education Partners to provide the intervention strategies for students identified through the Early Warning and Response System (EWRS). A formal announcement of the subgrantee selections was made in May 2015, and the initiative officially became known as “OnTrack Greenville.”
  • June 2015
    • OnTrack Greenville implementation began with the launch of Building Educated Leaders for Life (BELL) on June 15, 2015. At this time, the subgrantee partners, principals of the OnTrack Greenville schools, and other key persons began meeting regularly as “Implementation Partners” to ensure successful implementation, alignment of services in the schools and leveraging of the collaboration.
  • January 2016
    • After convening for six months, key stakeholders— Greenville County Schools, Greenville Partnership for Philanthropy, Implementation Partners, the Riley Institute, and United Way of Greenville County— codified the partnership agreement and designed a shared leadership model.

How we began