Why It Matters

Our students and families live in the most underserved neighborhoods of St. Louis, with generations of poverty before them. Children of poverty may face homelessness, hunger, crisis, lack of stability, security, basic needs…the list goes on. Education is key to helping a child rise above circumstances. Yet, the barriers of poverty can impact a student’s attendance and ability to concentrate, learn and progress academically. Struggling parents lack the resources or time to address educational needs, and teachers and schools can’t marshal the support alone.

Consider how early proficiencies can predict future academic success:

87% of students with chronic absenteeism by 6th grade will not graduate on time


Children who do not read proficiently by 3rd grade are 4x more likely to leave school

Sixth graders with a failing mark for classroom behavior are 90% likely not to graduate on time

Why this matters on a large scale:

Students that do not graduate high school experience a lifetime earnings loss ranging from $350,000-$740,000

Young men without a diploma are 47x more likely to be incarcerated

Premature death is 2.5x higher for those with fewer than 12 years of education

Administrators and educators recognize that achieving academic success is no longer satisfied without addressing the needs of the whole child; that students have unmet needs which prevent them from reaching their full potential. Little Bit’s mission is grounded in the belief that all children deserve the opportunity to reach a level of self-worth, belonging and confidence that will empower them to fulfill their dreams. It matters, because they matter.

Double Jeopardy, Annie E. Casey Foundation
Prevent Student Disengagement, Balfauz, Herzog, MacIver
Keeping Kids in School, Center for Public Education
United States Census Bureau
Report from Center for Labor Market Studies (Northeastern University)
Alliance for Excellent Education

Read some of the successes and testimonials on the impact of our programming.