Making the Connection: Community Improvement through Academic Achievement. (Special Advertising Section)

Article excerpt

The State Farm Insurance Companies have long been recognized as leaders in the insurance and financial services market. Increasingly, State Farm is also building a name as a leading community partner and a strong advocate for education.

State Farm Chairman and CEO Edward B. Rust hits involved his organization in efforts focused on improved student achievement. Through their work with national and state business-education organizations, State Farm agents and associates have committed themselves to education advancement efforts in local communities across the country.

"We know that the most effective way for alt of us to reach the goal of improved student achievement for all children is for the education, business and legislative communities to work together," Rust says. "This past year, with the passage of the landmark bipartisan `No Child Left Behind' education legislation, we've seen how important it is for all interested parties to work together to close the achievement gap and to put real, meaningful educational reforms in place."

State Farm focuses its community involvement on strategic partnerships that work to improve living, employment and educational opportunities. As a result, the company has taken a prominent business role in support of school-based service-learning, a teaching method that combines service to the community with a classroom curriculum. Service-learning creates hands-on opportunities for students to master subject material while simultaneously addressing societal needs.

State Farm has formed strategic partnerships with, and The State Farm Companies Foundation provides funding for, the National Service-Learning Partnership, Youth Service America and the National Youth Leadership Council--organizations dedicated to bringing service-learning to classrooms from kindergarten through college. …