The Private Industry Council of Westmoreland/Fayette Inc. is operating the 21st Century Learning Center Afterschool STEM Programs across 3 counties, including Beaver, Fayette and Westmoreland. Currently, afterschool classrooms are located in Aliquippa, New Brighton, Connellsville, Ligonier, Monessen and Southmoreland School Districts. The funding is provided to offer academic and enrichment opportunities to children, particularly students who attend high poverty and low-performing schools, to meet state and local standards in core academic subjects through a broad array of activities that can complement their regular academic programs. Nearly 40,000 students participate in 21st CCLC programs across Pennsylvania with over 150 grantees. These grantees, including the Private Industry Council, all strive to increase the student’s various academic and behavioral measures. The teachers involved in the Afterschool Program are certified and are mostly made up of faculty from the school the programs reside in.
Current data indicates that the more a students participate in a 21st CCLC program on a consistent basis, the greater the likelihood that they will improve in school. Students who also participate have shown improvements in behavior, homework completion and daily school attendance. The programs, which operate 4 days a week for 3 hours per day, provide opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math or STEM subjects. STEM activities provide students with capabilities such as perseverance, critical thinking and quality of relationships with adults and peers while also prepare them for STEM careers.
The Afterschool Programs have a heavy emphasis on Parent Engagement and families are invited to participate in activities such as advisory meetings, family nights and open houses. Families also participate in a broad array of other programs and activities such as, drug and violence prevention programs, financial literacy programs, arts, music and physical fitness/wellness programs.
The Afterschool Programs are another example of how PIC has invested in youth and is working to prepare them with workplace skills and employment for a successful future. Students in afterschool programs attend school more often, do better in school, gain skills for success and are more likely to graduate. Afterschool programs are a WIN for everyone involved. For more information on the Afterschool programs, please contact Shelly Gilmore, Youth Manager at 724-836-2600, ext. 207.