The Liberty Local School District, along with Youngstown State University and the United Way of Youngstown and the Mahoning Valley will host a celebration to highlight the district’s after school programs and showcase the 100 students who participate in them.
“Liberty is proud to partner with YSU and the United Way to offer after school programs to our students. These programs provide opportunity and support in a structured environment, which has shown to boost academic performance and reduce risky behaviors. These programs also provide a safe place for our students to engage with their peers as their parents work,” said Liberty PK-6 principal Jessica Kohler.
During the high school basketball game on Friday, January 11, 2019 at approximately 7 p.m., Liberty students who participate in Youngstown State University’s First Step After School Program and the United Way’s Success After 6 Program will form a tunnel at the beginning of the game. The students will then be recognized during halftime.
"Our goal of Success After 6 is to engage the whole child and the whole family, and together with the district, faculty, and staff we are achieving that goal,” said Bob Hannon, President of the United Way of Youngstown and the Mahoning Valley.
“First Step Afterschool has been able to support students academically, as well as socially and emotionally. Students are reporting a greater interest in reading and math. Parents are telling us the positive changes they are seeing in the children. To us, that is success,” said Angie Cameron, Director of Youngstown State University’s Center for Human Services Development.
Data from the Afterschool Alliance indicates the hours of 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. are the most dangerous for children, as they are most likely left home alone. Afters school programs provide a safe place for students to engage in activities to help strengthen their skill set, as opposed to engaging in risky behaviors.