The Lake City After School Program has operated since 2013. MC2 has relocated the program four times in 5 years with its initial kickoff at the Lake City Community Center. Many have donated long hours of planning and advocacy. Support from the North Seattle Chamber of Commerce, Lake City Lions, Kaffeeklatsche Bakery, Seattle Parks/Meadowbrook and Lamb of God Lutheran Church have been instrumental in helping us realize an after school language support program at Olympic Hills Elementary (in Lake City District).
With all that support the engagement has required a weekly commitment. And commitment we’ve had. These critical years have relied on tutors who enjoy the ‘ride’. Enter Kathy C, Laura K and Jeannie S. Each of these wonderful and kind tutors bring their own energy, style and engagement to the outreach. It is a critical piece, to have the patience, time and individual interest in seeing our neighbors children have a chance at success.
With their own personal interest in successful student engagement, its important to share their observations (below) and understand how a community can build a program that encourages improved language aptitude. Building future scholars in need supports the hard work of teachers, credited along with onsite staff, to building a ‘School of Distinction’. Thank you, Tutors. Your commitment in these initial 5 years is an inspiration and the results give us pride in your work and the values you have shared with students and the community.
‘Our students come from all over the world, are new English learners, and show amazing changes. We can offer them the extra boost they need to succeed in their regular classrooms where they may be the only student at their language level. It is totally gratifying to be part of their assimilation into our culture and support them while they get up to speed.’
‘One of the best things about this program, aside from the reward of working with these children, is how it improves every year. Lots of reorganizing of process, tools, and more staffing. Sue has given me the opportunity to figure out my own style of teaching, and she knows how to use my style. It’s not a finely tuned machine, because it shouldn’t be. But it’s been rewarding to work with such a successful program.’
‘The students at Olympic Hills Elementary are from across the globe! They are bright and interesting – sometimes easy and sometimes challenging. But always learning. Even with just the Monday and Tuesday sessions, we can see an improvement in the children’s comprehension and use of the English language by the end of each year. One measure of success looks like this: when the student is asked what a story was about, they can explain the “main idea” – not just the “details”. Bingo!’