KANSAS CITY, KAN. – Afterschool programs help thousands of Kansas children receive much-needed guidance and support to succeed in school and later in life. These programs also give working parents peace of mind that their children are engaged in safe, edifying activities during the hours after school.
In recognition of the importance of such programs across the state, Governor Sam Brownback celebrated National Lights On Afterschool Day on Thursday, by visiting the Wyandotte Boys & Girls Club to observe the Kansas Reading Roadmap (KRR) activities regularly held there.
Each October, communities all across the country celebrate Lights On Afterschool to recognize the afterschool programs that keep kids safe and inspire them to learn. During the visit to the Boys & Girls Club facility, 1240 Troup Ave., Kansas City, Kan., the Governor signed a proclamation designating Oct. 20 as Lights On Afterschool Day in Kansas.
The Governor watched children performing reading activities before speaking to the participants about the importance of education and healthy choices.
"I'm so excited to see how this program is helping you improve your reading," Governor Brownback told the group of children. "You're so fortunate to have an afterschool program like this, where all your tutors love you and care about your success."
KRR is one of many afterschool programs across the state that are making a difference in the future of school children. Two branches of the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Kansas City employed the KRR strategy this past June.
"The KRR has been a true godsend to our program," said Jesse Chapman, Director of Education for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City. "It has brought a structure and focus that the kids love and have really responded well to."
KRR is a contracted partner of the Kansas Department for Children and Families (DCF) that offers a poverty-prevention program to help struggling readers of low-income families. KRR operates 53 programs across the state, serving more than 10,000 students. It is partially funded through Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) dollars.
In addition to in-school, at-home and summer components, KRR provides afterschool programs that provide targeted reading practice, as well as free afterschool care for parents.
Kansas Multi-Tier System of Supports (MTSS) partners with KRR to provide appropriate literacy assistance to young students across the state. The success KRR has achieved is a result of this partnership and the ability of schools to extend their MTSS to afterschool and summer programming through the use of KRR.
Governor Sam Brownback signs a proclamation designating Oct. 20 as
Lights On Afterschool Day at the Boys & Girls Club in Kansas City)