About 200 children from 20 schools across the Fifth Congressional District descended on the Hazard Campus of the Hazard Community and Technical College on Monday as part of the 21st Century Community Learning Center.
The students, who ranged in age from kindergarten to high school seniors, demonstrated some of the activities they do in their after school programs. These enrichment activities included theatre performance, clogging, and music programs and educational programs such as math and science.
According to Susan Herald, the 21st Century Learning Center Director for the Jackson City School, the after school programs help students who might need an extra push in their academics by getting a tutor for them or by helping them complete their homework.
“It also gives enrichment activities. It keeps them active. Obesity is a real problem in eastern Kentucky and a lot of our programs offer physical fitness,” Herald, who also serves on the state wide advisory council for the 21st Century Community Learning Center, said.
Hazard Community College was a co-sponsor for the activity. The college also set up its road show, which involved different activities and demonstrations for the students.
“The students love hands on activities so this is perfect for them,” Herald said.
The 21st Century Community Learning Center Program is part of President Bush’s No Child Left Behind Act. It provides the students and their families an opportunity to continue to learn new skills and discover new abilities after the school day has ended. There are approximately 95 21st CCLC sites in Kentucky with 14 counties in the 5th Congressional District having 21st CCLC sites. In order to receive funding, the school district must apply through a competitive grant round. The following counties in the 5th Congressional District have 21st CCLC sites: Bell, Breathitt, Johnson, Knott, Knox, Lawrence, Lee, Leslie, Letcher, Morgan, Owsley Pike, Rowan and Whitley.