Adams School


In 1989 a Rotarian from Santa Barbara North (Ken Compton) and his wife (Ellie Compton) a Teacher at Adams Elementary School in Santa Barbara suggested a “Partner in Education” program between the Rotary Club, and Adams Elementary School (This was prior to the County Program). The Program began with Rotary Volunteers helping to Tutor some of the students that needed extra help with reading, Math, Language and other subjects. The Program has 1st , continued for 18 years, and 2nd branched out to involve assistance in many areas of the school activities.

One of the Teachers at Adams Kathy Escobar (Paul Harris Fellow) chose to succeed Ellie Compton, and Rotarian Dennis Waid succeeded Ken Compton in continuing the program until he was succeeded by PP Tom Jacobs, our present Community Service Chair

Adams Elementary School is a school in the Santa Barbara City School System, it was opened in 1954 for 250 students grades K-6. Today’s demographics are:

Students ~600
Title I Students (low income – reduced lunch price) 74%
English Language Learners 53%
Students with Disabilities 16%
Hispanic 74%
White 14%
African American 14%
Asian 2%

Adams School has been awarded the California Distinguished School in 2002, and a Title I Achieving School also in 2002; it’s scholastic standing on a 1-10 scale 10 being the highest, of schools with equivalent demographics is 9 – 10.Rotary’s involvement over the years has included:

  • In Class Tutoring
  • Contributing Computers for Kids
  • Books for rewards program
  • Rotary EarlyAct (First in the District)
  • Support a Chalk Art Square for the kids for Memorial Day at the Santa Barbara Mission
  • Assist in purchasing Library Books
  • Trees for the Campus
  • School Site Council
  • Trees and Benches for the Rotary Centennial Celebration
  • Approximately $30,000 in Cash Grants
  • RI Matching Grant for $16,000 of Playground Equipment.

Most of the Santa Barbara North members have been involved; Dennis Waid Perk Darlington, Joe Lanza, Vanessa Baily Joan Young, Terry Straehley, Rey Alcero, Dick Raymond, Finn Sundheim, Suzie Swenson, Joe Dobbs Dale Morgan and others. At least one Rotary Club meeting per year is scheduled on the Campus, so that the Club members, Teachers, Staff, and Students can interact.

Some of Our Projects with Adams School


Adams Program Coordinator Dennis Waid and Pres. Joan Young try out the new Rotary donated playground equipment at the Playground dedication ceremony at Adams School in 2008.  Through a Rotary Reverse Matching Grant Program, the Rotary Club of SB North was able to replace Adams Playground Equipment, that was removed due to safety issues, with no budget for it’s replacement.  The Rotary Clubs of Puerta Penasco, Celaya and Camirino, Mexico, along with their District contributed to this effort.

SB North Rotarians Blas Garza, Terry Straehley and Dennis Waid assisted in the building and installation of PlantersP100309_007 for the Adams School  Garden Project in 2010.  The planters were used to plant vegetables, and food for student education; the food grown was eaten by the students.

20090903_5D200157Sandie Zander and other members of SB North assist the School during their back to school orientation for students and parents in 2009.  Other Rotarians, Tom Jacobs, Dennis Waid, Stanley Weinstein also participated in this event.

Rotary / Adams Coordinator Tom Jacobs (far right) presents a 20140402-7D002788Rotary Family award to the Adams Family of the Month.  The RCSBN along with the School Staff selects a family per month where the entire family is involved in the school, for the betterment of the education process.  This award was presented at a Rotary meeting held on the Campus of Adams School in April of 2015.

20140211_7D012423Adams School Principal Amy Alzina is congratulating Rotary Club of SBN Members Stanley Weinstein, Tom Jacobs, Dennis Waid, and Kathy Escobar, who is a Rotarian, and was an Adams teacher for 22 years; on the completion of 25 years of support to Adams Elementary School.  This award was presented at a Santa Barbara School Board Meeting in February of 2014



SB North Rotarians working at a School Beautification day in 2013.  Adams School20130504_7D009896 schedules several Saturdays per year for School beautification and clean up. SB North Rotarians assist in these Days.

The Rotary Club of SBN schedules at least one of our weekly meetings at Adams School per year for a School tour, to associate with the school staff for a closer relationship. This was a typical meeting in 2009 at Adams SchoolP050330_004

Through Rotary efforts, every student 4th Grade and above who cannot afford a home computer, and with the Parents’ consent has received a free home computer. Also through Rotary Grants, every student that reads so many words, or pages, certified by a parent or teacher receives free books from the library.

During the summer of 2005 the State Safety standards changed and all of Adams Playground Equipment was removed with no budget or plans for replacement. Rotary has completed a matching Grant for $16,000 to help with the replacement. The playground equipment was installed in March of 2008, and dedicated in June of 2008.

This program has benefited the Community, the School, and Rotary; and will continue into the future.

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