With the first the six months of the Afterschool Program completed, it was time to validate that the core values our program embraces are making a difference in the lives of the students we serve.
At the beginning of the 20-21 school year Robbie was one of the initial students enrolled in the Tamassee’s Afterschool Program. He was entering the second grade and was welcomed into our elementary classroom with other students his age. During his young life, Robbie has dealt with a series of traumatic and stressful situations. Duing the first few weeks in the Afterschool Program he struggled to focus on homework, had little interest in reading, found it difficult to build positive relations with his classmates, and tested below grade level in reading and math. Robbie was having a difficult time coping with his feelings which had a negative effect on his ability to learn. Thanks to the one on one attention he received in the Afterschool Program, Robbie has made a tremendous amount of progress since last August. His teachers have demonstrated to Robbie that it is normal to have emotions and they have been able to help him in not only recognizing his feelings, but controlling his actions when things become difficult. The progress he has made was recently illustrated when a classmate was being uncooperative. Instead of responding in a negative manner, there was pride on the faces of his teachers when Robbie simply turned his back and said, “I need to walk away for a minute”.
Not only has improvement in his social reflex reactions become evident, but our January STAR testing results show a significate increase in Robbie’s reading and math score. This is important because the national trend in our country indicates that children below grade level in reading in the 3rd grade are 4 times more likely not to graduate from high school. Upon completion of the mid-year STAR testing for all our students, we were very excited to realize and to announce that 100% of our Afterschool students showed improvement in math and 82% showed improvement in reading.
Robbie’s story is just one example of the impacts we have made in the lives of those we are serving this year. Supporting the individual needs of each student and providing a nurturing environment to learn and grow is what we do for each and every child enrolled in our program.
We are looking for adults who have a couple hours a week to read and practice math with our lower and upper elementary school students. There is no way to explain the sense of accomplishment and reward you feel when your student’s eyes sparkle because the light of understanding has turned on! If you have a passion for serving others we would love to welcome you to our volunteer family. Please contact us at email@example.com to start the process. For the health and safety of students, staff, guests and volunteers, we follow safety guidelines associated with Covid 19 restrictions.
In the interest of privacy, the actual name of the student in this article has been changed.