After School Curriculum is Attracting National Attention

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An after school program is attracting national attention for its use of STEM related activities.

A national spotlight will shine on Williams Valley School District’s after school curriculum.

Just as the district’s 21st Century Community Learning Centers program is coming off the success of its first Mini-THON event, the Vikes’ program received news that it has been selected for nationwide attention.

Superintendent Donald Burkhardt and Elementary Principal Caitlin Mohl announced at the March 13 school board meeting that Williams Valley was chosen to represent Pennsylvania as a featured Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics program in a “virtual showcase” sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education.

“I am honored to have been chosen for this prestigious award. It is shaping up to be quite an event,” Williams Valley Site Coordinator Susan Diegert said.

According to Diegert, a team of professional videographers was to come to Williams Valley Elementary School on Wednesday to create a video for the U.S. Department of Education for national release. This recognition is a STEM award, presented by the U.S. Department of Education to Schuylkill Intermediate Unit 29, who then chose Williams Valley’s 21st CCLC as the site for a virtual showcase of STEM activities.

After School Curriculum is Attracting National Attention

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Meeting needs

At Williams Valley’s CCLC program, activities are aligned to the classroom curriculum. That means instructors cover the topics in the curriculum, but in a different manner to meet the students’ needs. The after-school program is completely free and open to students, regardless of their current academic scores or progress. It’s hoped, however, that students will boost their academic scores in math, reading and science; reduce the number of discipline incidents; and improve their attendance records as a result of attending the program.

At Williams Valley Elementary, the program is open to fifth- and sixth-graders and homebound busing is provided for them every evening. The 21st CCLC program is popular – there are approximately 80 students registered for the program, which runs from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday.

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