After School Programs at New AP

Photo of Winston Persaud

Every year as summer comes to a close, we turn here at New AP to the upcoming school year and the resumption of our after school programs in September. For the 2022-2023 school year, we will have programs at two elementary sites, Jolly Elementary School and International Community School (ISC), as well as one middle school program, Freedom Middle School. Jolly will serve 40-60 students and ISC will have 20 children, while the middle school program will begin with 40-60 kids.

On one level, after school programs support and enhance the work students do during the regular school day. Each day, students receive homework support as well as have a lesson covering one of several topics. Lessons, for example, might involve a STEAM activity, a discussion centered on character development and emotional well-being, or literacy involving a reading group. In addition, physical activity, including the ever-popular daily soccer game, is part of the daily routine.

On another level, the after school programs serve as a rich source of community and belonging for both students and adults alike. Diversity in many different directions is the norm, and students develop friendships across lines of difference. Because students do not usually visit the homes of friends on the weekends or after school, and because many have numerous important responsibilities in their homes, the after school programs serve as important outlets for kids to be kids.

In recent years, studies have concluded that young people who have even one caring adult in their life have much better life outcomes than those who feel that nobody cares or pays attention to them. And this is perhaps the most enduring aspect of what these programs provide youth: mentorship that not only helps them be successful in the short term, but instead persons who give back and serve others when they grow up — a mission in line with New AP’s core identity.