Many factors that affect a child’s ability to learn are found outside the classroom and exist well before a child reaches school age. From prenatal care to strong relationships with positive adult role models, these factors can have a significant influence on a student’s likelihood for success. This report highlights some of the initiatives TCCC partners have already implemented to address the social issues that impact educational outcomes for children in our community. By maintaining focus on both factors inside the classroom and beyond, we have the opportunity to help every child succeed.
Extended Learning Time
Extended learning time that’s tied to classroom learning can help reduce out-of-school learning loss and improve academic achievement. Common barriers to enrollment include cost of attendance, transportation, and program hours that don’t meet the needs of working families.
“Research has clearly shown that expanded learning time can help address the achievement gap and reduce summer learning loss. Quality afterschool and summer programs are often able to connect students to community, cultural, civic, and business organizations that can truly help impact student success and help at-risk kids beat the odds.”
Dr. Terry K. Peterson National Board Chair, Afterschool Alliance
Health & Wellness
“At least one in four children in South Carolina struggles with food insecurity. Chronic food insecurity has many adverse consequences for children, including impaired cognitive function, compromised ability to resist illness, absenteeism at school, and higher levels of aggression, hyperactivity and anxiety. BackPack Buddies and School Pantry programs are a significant first step in improving both short and longterm outcomes among our at-risk children.”
Pat Walker President & CEO, Lowcountry Food Bank
“We know that when a mother has good prenatal care, her baby is more likely to develop normally; we know that regular well-checks result in healthy growth and development; and we know that access to treatment gets kids back in the classroom and ready to learn. Simply put, we know healthy kids are better equipped to learn and that learning is the key to life success.”
Dr. David Cole President, Medical University of South Carolina
Social & Emotional Development
“The WINGS model differs significantly from standard youth development programs because it weaves a comprehensive social and emotional skills curriculum into after school programming for elementary school students. We recruit differently, train intensively, provide constant feedback, and closely monitor efforts and outcomes.”
Eleanor Smythe, Executive Director, WINGS for Kids
Positive Adult Relationships
“We understand a positive parent or adult role model is THE key factor in student success. With it, students can weather the inevitable bumps of growth and continue to get stronger. Without it, students with great promise lose steam and fail to realize their potential. This is why we require participation from our parents and try to surround youth with additional adult role models.”
Rev. Bill Stanfield, CEO, Metanoia
Strong connections between families and schools can positively influence student achievement. As part of their commitment to addressing the whole child, schools like Meeting Street Elementary @Brentwood connect families with schools by reaching out one family at a time, offering off-hour appointments, and providing activities for the entire family that include transportation assistance, meals and childcare.
What We’re Doing
In surveying the state of extended learning time (ELT) programs offered in the tri-county area (after school and summer), TCCC identified a number of issues faced by multiple providers that could be addressed by sharing information and collaborating. Informal discussions among the largest providers in the community – the four districts – uncovered several opportunities to work together with providers of all types and sizes to help learn from one another and ensure the needs of ALL students are being met, particularly those students most “at-risk.”An Extended Learning Time Network is in the early phases of development, with plans to seek the participation of additional providers. Among preliminary topics the group intends to explore are program evaluation, enrichment programming, capacity building and equity of access to opportunities.
2 in 3 schools need more qualified volunteers
“We believe advancing the cognitive, social, emotional and physical capacities of children at an early age will engage them in lifelong learning and put them on the path to succeed in school and in life. Initiatives such as TCCC underscore Boeing’s commitment to education and student wellness and ensuring all children have the opportunity to aim high, reach for the stars, and achieve their maximum potential.”