Gilchrist County Schools provide FREE after school and summer programs at both elementary school sites through a 21st CCLC competitive grant. This valuable grant provides the funding to support these programs. The 21st Century program provides additional opportunities for academic and personal enrichment for targeted students, with the primary goals of improving academic achievement, increasing the availability of and exposure to enriching activities, and increasing parental involvement. The primary program components include Reading, Math, Science, Wellness, Technology, Art, and Music. We also provide homework help and tutoring. The program includes Project Based Learning activities. Students apply to attend this program, and are accepted based on availability and a matrix of factors that demonstrate need. Applications are scored based on this matrix of weighting criteria, and students are enrolled based on this score until all slots are filled. Students come to program directly from their regular school day classroom, and rotate through activities until dismissal time at 6:15 pm each regularly scheduled school day. The program is a lot of fun, but is also structured and focused on program goals. Students are provided with a nutritious snack each day, and are provided with breakfast and lunch during summer days. Transportation is not provided, so parents must pick up their child by the dismissal time each day. If your child is permitted to walk or drive home every day, you must submit the appropriate form giving permission to do so. Safety procedures are followed at all times, so you will be asked for ID when signing your child out unless you are visually recognized by program staff. Only persons listed on the child's check-out form will be permitted to sign out and pick up, so be sure to keep this form up to date. In order to apply for this program, please complete and submit the application to the left.

Activities / Assessment

21st Century students take part in tutoring and homework help each day, with a much lower student to teacher ratio than the regular school day. In addition, students take part in Reading, Math, and Science activities that help to ensure appropriate grade level performance. Academics are a focus for 90 minutes each day. Personal enrichment activities are rotated to throughout the week. Wellness activities include structured physical activity (races, games, dance videos, cheerleading, karate, Zumba, Pilates, yoga, etc.) as well as physical education activities centered on nutrition, learning about the human body, dental health, mental health, obesity awareness, safety, and character education. Safety lessons may include anything from Stranger Danger to bicycle safety. Art and Music components focus on learning about artists and musicians, types and genres of art and music, mediums and instruments used, technique, and also hands-on art and music projects. Students create original works of art, replicate works by famous artists, identify instruments by sound, and many more fun activities. The Technology block is focused on exposing children to various types of new technologies, as well as teaching them how to use them safely (social networking, blogging, wikis, pings). Students learn about computer hardware and software, and take part in activities ranging from disassembling computers to learning Excel formulas. All activities are designed to be learning disguised as fun!

Although 21st Century is a super-fun, hands-on program (launching hot-air balloons, left), we also have to be sure to measure the progress of students so that we can continually improve strategies and demonstrate the impact of the program. Students are progress monitored with simple pre, mid, and post assessments in August, January, and May. We also track school progress monitoring data from academic assessments such as Performance Matters. Classroom grades from the 1st 9 weeks and the 4th 9 weeks are compared, and FSA/SAT10 growth from year to year is compared as well.

95% of teachers report improvements in the amount of homework turned in by program students!

94% report improvements in the QUALITY of homework turned in!

62% report moderate to significant improvements in academic performance of enrolled students!

Teachers report improvements in student attentiveness, behavior, motivation, and more!

Text Alert System

Parents: 21st Century now has a text alert system in place! In order to receive text alerts regarding program information, please send a message to: 81010. In the message line, your text should read:

@tes21 to sign up for alerts from the TES program
@bes21 to sign up for alerts from the BES program

If you have any questions, please contact Patricia Powers at (352) 463-4408.