Timeline
Support Homeless Children - Have a Little Faith in Me PSA

 View our 2016 Annual Report

School on Wheels, Inc. is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organization founded in 1993 by Agnes Stevens, a retired schoolteacher, who understood the importance of education to homeless students - and the unique challenges they face. We were then, and we remain, the only organization in Southern California dedicated exclusively to the educational needs of this fragile population.

Today, hundreds of volunteers work one-on-one with children whose homelessness prevents them from getting the academic stability and help they desperately need. The heart of School on Wheels’ programs is the volunteer tutors who come from all backgrounds and professions, with a shared goal – to reach out to a child, to teach, to mentor, and assist in their educational life.

The mission of School on Wheels is to enhance educational opportunities for homeless children from kindergarten through twelfth grade. Our goal is to shrink the gaps in their education and provide them with the highest level of education possible. Our program serves as a consistent support system to homeless students at a time of great stress and fear. We bring the message to our students that they are cared about and important.

We do this by offering:

  • One-on-one weekly tutoring
  • School supplies
  • Assistance in entering school
  • Help in locating lost records
  • Scholarships
  • Guidance for parents in educational matters for their children
  • A Learning Center located in the heart of Skid Row

Our core values represent what we believe in, what we stand for, and how we approach everything we do. They determine how we treat each other, our students, volunteers, donors, partners, and the communities we serve. Our values serve as both a description of what we already share and an aspiration for what School on Wheels continues to strive for. We measure our success by how well we live up to them.

Trust
Integrity
Innovation
Flexibility
Passion
Teamwork

Homelessness in America

Accurate statistics regarding the number of homeless children are difficult to obtain. The homeless population is constantly in flux. The statistics are the most recent and admittedly under-estimated. Most counts do not specifically identify children, do not include families staying in motels, or children living in group foster homes.

Here are additional resources to find out more about homelessness in the U.S. and how you can help.
Here are additional resources to find out more about homelessness in the U.S. and how you can help.

Who We Are

The Executive Board

Joshua Fein, President

Chief Financial Officer, Property Management Associates, Inc.

Steven Dahlberg, Treasurer

President, The Kissel Company, Inc.

Clifford Neiman, Secretary

Principal, The Neiman Group Architects

Lynn M. Gardner, Esq.

Retired Electric Power Executive

Jackson George

SVP, Creative Film Services, Walt Disney Studios

Professor Christine ​Chambers Goodman

Pepperdine University School of Law

Beong-Soo Kim

Vice President and Assistant General Counsel, Kaiser Permanente

Mitchell Leib

President of Music and Soundtracks, Walt Disney Studios & The Disney Music Group

Laurie Levit

Educational Consultant

Catherine Meek

Executive Director, School on Wheels

Cecil L. “Chip” Murray

Professor of Religion, Tanzy Chair in Christian Ethics, USC

Ellen Padnos

Co-Founder, Joyful Giving

Angela M. Sanchez

Program Analyst for College Success, ECMC Foundation

Susan Taylor

President, OMD Entertainment

Janet Ambrosi Wertman

Development Consultant

Melissa Zukerman

Managing Partner, Principal Communications Group

Our Students

Every month we ask our regional staff to nominate a star student. Our students receive a special certificate for being nominated. It is a great privilege to work with these amazing students.

Vyctoria Bennett, 3rd Grade

April 2017

Online

Vyctoria LOVES online tutoring. When other students are absent and cannot attend their online tutoring sessions, Vyctoria is always ready to jump in! Some of Vyctoria’s favorite things to do with her online tutors include reading stories, solving math puzzles, drawing and playing hangman! Vyctoria’s thirst for learning is contagious. Go Vyctoria!

Skid Row Learning Center

Philemon Hodgson, 2nd Grade

June 2017

Online

Philemon is an energetic, creative, and hilarious student. He is full of life and loves drawing. In addition, when he gets stuck on a difficult homework problem, he can stop, focus, and solve the problem. Then he does a quick victory dance and goes on with his artistic brilliance. His goofy, upbeat behavior always makes me laugh. Phi has a one-of-a-kind personality and is a delight to tutor. Congratulations Phi on this well-deserved award!

Nikil Grama, Philemon’s Online Tutor

Ashley, 3rd Grade

March 2017

Online

In the beginning, Ashley was quiet and evasive. Over time, Ashley has become quite the young academic! When we get online, she greets us with a smile or a joke and is always ready to learn. Every Tuesday and Thursday, we look forward to hearing her stories about her school day. Ashley is one of the most determined, thoughtful and upbeat young women we have ever met. It is a pleasure to tutor and teach her every week. We know we’ll see her name in the record books one day, that’s for sure!

Esther & Joshua, Online Tutors

Stephany, 3rd Grade

February 2017

Long Beach, South Bay Cities

Stephany is such a sweet girl. She’s always one to give gifts, such as rocks, to show how much she appreciates you. She’s hesitant about learning or practicing, especially her multiplication tables, but always strives to do better. I try to make each lesson fun for her, and it really keeps her engaged. It is genuinely exciting to see her do her multiplication tables much faster now. I look forward to our next challenge.

Diane Lopez, Tutor

Jadelynn, 4th Grade

December 2016

San Fernando Valley

Jadelynn is a sweet fourth grader with a lot of potential. She is very funny, intelligent, competitive and creative. She has a lot of energy and shows a great passion for learning. Her goal for the future is to become a teacher at the elementary school that she attends.

Maya McKeever, Tutor

Our Volunteers

Volunteers are the heart and soul of School on Wheels. In 2015, 2,219 volunteers tutored 3,491 homeless students. The Presidential Volunteer Service Award recognizes individuals, families, and groups that have achieved a certain standard, measured by the number of hours of service over a 12-month period or cumulative hours earned over the course of a lifetime. Read more through our Star Volunteer stories.

Learn More