Helping Students in King County Graduate

Education is a gateway out of poverty, but odds are often stacked against low-income kids from the start. United Way is working to break down these barriers in order to give kids in King County a fighting chance and empower Seattle schools to engage these students—and we need your help.

Donate to help students graduate in King County

Words heard by age 5 (in millions)

Low Income
Middle Income
High Income

By the time low-income children are 5 years old, they will have heard 30 million fewer words than their wealthy peers.

Three out of four low-income kids in Washington start school behind their more affluent peers.

That’s not fair. And what happens if you start school behind? Are you ever able to catch up?

For 14,000 youth in Seattle and King County, the answer has been no. Instead, these disconnected youth have dropped out of school, have no plans to attend college, and don’t have viable job prospects.

Solutions that speak for themselves

United Way uses proven solutions to coach parents, help pre-K kids prepare for the classroom, and support high school students to get back on track after major struggles or dropping out.

Parent-Child Home Program

The Parent-Child Home Program supports families during the crucial early years of child development. Trained coaches bring educational books and toys to parents to help them become their child’s first and best teacher.

Impact to date


Families participating in the program


Completion rate of participants


Percentage points more likely to graduate

Reconnecting Youth

United Way provides alternative methods and support for youth to complete their education and work towards a high school dimploma, a college degree, and a stable career.

Impact to date


Youth earned a high school credential


Participants in the program


Raised to help reconnect youth

You can get involved

These programs have been proven to be effective in helping students graduate. Now we need your support to bring these programs to scale. By 2020 our goal is to have 80% of low-income kids start kindergarten prepared and to re-engage 7,000 disconnected youth. Will you help students graduate by giving a gift today?