The Whittier Educational Foundation (TechFutures) is a non-profit organization started by started by Ron and Ellen Whittier in 2000. The purpose was, through technology, to provide under-served WCCUSD students a leg up in pursuing college and career opportunities. The technical curriculum focused on the emerging field of the internet: hardware, software and content (media) design and development.”
Originally, it started as an after school program where students came for 2 hours after school for 2 years where each class was a semester long. They would take Beginning Web the (1st semester), Beginning Networking (2nd semester), Beginning Database (3rd semester) and then the advance course of their choosing in the final semester. Due to the different student circumstances that the students have with family commitments it was hard to have students stay after school. So the Whittier’s decided to have the classes during school. They have worked hand-in-hand with the district to have the technology courses meet the A-G college requirements.
The district decided to form small learning communities (SLCs) to better serve the students. The Whittiers (TechFutures) felt that this was a great opportunity to reach out to more students and this is when the Information Technology Academy was started.
TechFutures serves to support the three IT Academies (El Cerrito, Kennedy, and De Anza) by providing curriculum, work-based learning support, technical infrastructure support, and college/career training.