Thursday, May 6, 2010
Summer program available for free
By SUE WATSON
All students in grades 7-12 in Marshall County can go to a free, extended-year summer program provided by Ole Miss and Mississippi Teacher Corps, according to Germain McConnell, assistant dean of the Department of Education at the university.
In the past four years, the program has cost parents, but this year grant monies will provide the program free to children. It includes free breakfast and lunches, free tuition, and free club participations.
Parents and guardians of any student residing in public or private schools in the area may obtain an application, fill it out, and send it back to their school or to the county or city school district offices.
Ben Guest, program manager of Mississippi Teacher Corps, said classes begin Tuesday, June 8, and end Friday, July 9. Students attend classes from 7 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. Monday-Friday and then may opt to participate in after-school clubs, he said.
The extended-year school program is designed for children who failed a subject, for those who passed a subject but want to improve in the subject for state testing, and for kids who want to take courses for enrichment, Guest said.
Courses offered include: English - 7th and 8th grade and English I, II, III, IV; math for 7th and 8th grades, pre-algebra and algebra I; biology, U.S. history; and Mississippi studies. Clubs will be offered in drama, photography, ACT preparation, film, computer, chess, step, art and others. Students must be enrolled in class to participate in a club.
Students who have participated in the extended-year summer program have demonstrated an 80 percent improvement in test scores (pre-test, post-test).
The extended-year summer program is taught by new Teacher Corps trainees as well as second-year experienced Teacher Corps instructors, McConnell said.
“It’s our opportunity to give back,” McConnell said. “It provides training to our incoming teachers and second-year teachers are lead teachers. It benefits us as well as the Holly Springs and Marshall County students.”
Students must provide their own transportation. First served students will be those in any school in Marshall County, public or private. If classes do not fill to capacity, students from surrounding counties will be allowed to enroll.
All students currently in grades 7-12 are encouraged to participate whether they need to make up a course they have failed or to improve their understanding of a course or whether they take a course for enrichment.
“We feel it will improve academic performance in the districts,” McConnell said.
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