“Young people who participate in high-quality afterschool and summer programs improve attendance, gain confidence and try harder to learn.”
Young people in their middle years, ages 10-14, undergo rapid physical, emotional, social and cognitive changes while facing many new challenges and critical choices in their lives. At this stage many students begin to struggle with academic work and often feel disengaged from their families, peers and others.
Elev8 Baltimore seeks to respond to this need and create a powerful environment for learning from the best practices emerging across isolated initiatives, linking them together through a comprehensive model and applying them within diverse community and school settings.
The Children’s Defense Fund’s Freedom Schools® summer program is a model program focused on literacy, civic engagement, social action, intergenerational leadership development, nutrition, and health.
The program focuses on reading and achievement, and encourages children to believe they can make a difference in themselves, their family, their community, their country and world.
Elev8 Baltimore hosts Freedom Schools®, providing youth with an energetic and inspirational summer, filled with books, song, field trips and camaraderie.
After School Learning
From September to May each year, increasing numbers of students are participating in the after school programs offered by Elev8 Baltimore. Each school in the Elev8 Baltimore network coordinates three hours of after school programming for three-four days per week. The afternoon hours include 45 minutes of academic enrichment, dinner/supper, and ninety minutes of athletic, cultural or social enrichment.
Young professionals and college students staff the after school programs, serving as role models and learning coaches for students. Partners during the school year include:
- Art with a Heart
- Creative Alliance
- Higher Achievement
- Parks and People Foundation
- And many others!
1:1 and Small Group Mentoring
Students from the Elev8 Baltimore network of schools are mentored by a caring and well-trained adult thanks to our partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Maryland and C&C Advocacy, Inc. Students are visited by their mentors during the school day or on the weekends, and have an opportunity to engage in city and state-wide events and fieldtrips hosted by Big Brothers Big Sisters.
Where needed or requested, we also support the formation of mentoring groups, in which small groups of young girls and boys can come together to explore issues of self-esteem, goals and aspirations, and be exposed to opportunities beyond their school and neighborhood.
We work closely with schools to increase and improve the quality of leadership roles available to middle grade students. This includes the coordination of student government, inclusion of students in the design of out-of-school time activities, and improving approaches to behavior management and school climate issues.