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Foster Grandparent Program

The CESA 10 Foster Grandparent Program (FGP) pairs Foster Grandparents with students to serve as role models, mentors, tutors, and friends. Foster Grandparents are income qualified adults who are at least 55 years old. They work in classrooms during the school day under the direction of teachers on tasks such as reading, practicing math facts, and spelling words.

Due to the efforts of the CESA 10 Foster Grandparent Coordinator, and support by CESA 10 districts, this program has continued despite recent changes in state methods of funding. This program has been honored as a Daily Point of Light recipient for being an exemplary model for inter-generational relationships.

You can sign up to be become a Foster Grandparent here.

Foster Grandparents:
  • Develop relationships with the students and other adults in the school.
  • Offer comfort and love, setting a child on the path toward a successful future.
  • Work individually with students to meet their needs one-on-one.
  • Share experiences, wisdom and compassion.
  • Earn a small stipend and a transportation reimbursement if income qualified.
  • Are required to serve a minimum of 5 hours/week but can work as much as 40 hours/week (15-20 hours is recommended).
  • Are provided pre-service and in-service training as well as insurance and often a school meal while serving.

The Foster Grandparent Program is sponsored by The Corporation for National and Community Service, Wisconsin Department of Health Services and locally by CESA 10.



Why CESA 10?

CESA has sponsored the FGP since 1987. Our Chippewa Falls program was one of the first 8 pilot programs in the nation when the program began in 1965. We were sponsored by the Northern Center in CF from 1965 until 1987. In 1987 CESA 10 became the sponsor and the FGs moved from working exclusively at the Northern Center to working in the CESA 10 schools.

The Foster Grandparents bring wisdom, patience, and life long experiences to students and classrooms and their presence provides an inter-generational educational experience.


Do foster grandparents host the children? No, the children are not hosted by their foster grandparents. FGP activities only take place at the host school.

Can I chose what grade/class to work with if teacher is good with it? The program coordinator, volunteer, and school district work together to determine grade/class that best works for all involved.

What education (training) is provided for me? 20 hours of orientation in provided before a volunteer is placed with a school district. An additional 24 hours of in-service is provided during each service year.

What kind of skills would be helpful? Helpful skills include, patience, enjoy working with children, helpful disposition, positivity, empathy, communication, following directions, and confidentiality.

How many hours are required? A volunteer needs to serve at least 5 hours a week, however they can work up to 40 hours per week. The preferred amount is 15-20 hours per week.

Is this a paid position? (stipend/mileage) All volunteers receive a transportation reimbursement for travel to and from their home to their school station and to in-service meetings. Income qualified volunteers receive a modest tax-free stipend for their time at school and in-service meetings.

hand pile

Foster Grandparents volunteered in 17/18

kids arm in arm

Students were served in 19 schools

meeting at school with teachers

Service hours were provided

Become Part of the Successful CESA 10 Family - Find Out How

Everyone's talking about CESA 10

"The Foster Grandparent Program keeps my perspective on life positive. I have a purpose, I have worth. I benefit every day I go to school both mentally and physically."

Millie Polinske, Foster Grandparent for 25 years, Osseo Elementary

"Grandma Judy makes everyday a great day at school with her warm heart, sincere smiles and kind words. 4K loves Grandma Judy!"

Lisa Lyngen, Teacher, Osseo Elementary

View All Testimonials


Mary Byrns, Program Supervisor