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Harrison offers tutoring program

February 3, 2014
By ROBERT A. DEFRANK - Special to the Herald-Star , The Herald-Star

CADIZ Harrison Hills City school board members recently heard an update regarding the 21st Century After-School Tutoring Program with the goal of increasing academic achievement in math and reading in grades seventh through ninth.

The after-school program is offered Mondays through Thursdays, with an average of 30 students on a daily basis. The program is offered in the school library.

Ken Parker of Harrison Central Junior High, who serves as one of the site managers with Brent Ripley, kicked off the report. He gave details and background of the program, noting that it is funded through a five-year grant and is in its third year of operation. He related the positive feedback from parents who are impressed with the improvements in their children's grades and social skills.

"All in all it's been a real good year for us," he said.

Staff includes Sue Macenczak, who teaches science; Rob Richards, history and technology; and Angelina Carlier and Dori Snodgrass, social work.

Co-directors Eric Sheets and Pam Tope also spoke to the board. Tope related the progress of the Character Counts program, focusing on character building throughout the school day. She noted the students work in groups of about seven.

"The kids have really gelled together and they've learned to express themselves," she said.

Robert Richards noted the students also make use of iPads and Nooks to participate in the Brainchild program to allow tracking of the students' growth. Richards noted the program also is being used in the elementary schools.

Sheets spoke about the evening tutoring program.

"We're trying to get some options for kids who are into athletics or other programs that can't get to the after-school program. That's why it was designed in the evenings the way it was," he said. "That's the idea of evening tutoring, to try to give kids as much access to help as they can get."

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