The Board of Directors of the Bartlesville Education Promise announced the expansion of the school programs in association with the Bartlesville Public Schools. For the in-school programs for 2016-17 additional projects will be added starting with this school year.
Similar to 2015-16, funds will be provided for elementary schools to purchase books so that struggling students can take home reading books. The 2015-16 project provided take home books for at least 20% of primary students. Parents are also encouraged to help their student practice their reading. This year, in addition to purchasing books for elementary schools, additional funds are being provided for after school tutoring and transportation for third-grade students. Tutoring will be provided in reading and math. Schedules for tutoring will be determined by each elementary school based upon availability of teachers.
New pilot programs are being funded to encourage parental involvement at two schools. These programs, which will be funded at Madison Middle School and Wilson Elementary School, will encourage parent involvement, in support of education and safety.
After school tutoring will be initiated at the two Middle Schools by teachers in math and reading. This tutoring will be held two days a week, with transportation home after the tutoring to be provided.
Tutoring at the Bartlesville High School will continue for the upcoming year, and will be expanded to three days a week. Last year, during five months of the program, students took advantage of 957 tutoring sessions. This year tutoring will continue in Algebra 1, Geometry, English, and Science. Transportation will continue to be provided for those students taking advantage of the tutoring.
In her presentation to the Bartlesville Education Promise Board, LaDonna Chancellor, BPS Coordinator for the programs and Principal at Bartlesville High School, said she and all the staff that were involved with both the in-school and summer programs sponsored by BEP “could not be happier with the outcome of the project. With the 976 tutoring sessions at the high school, we saw marked improvement in the students that took advantage of these sessions.” Many of these students could be classified as “at risk” of not keeping up with their studies.
BEP also funded and supported a very successful Summer Academy. Summer transition camps were held for over 230 students that were going from elementary schools to middle schools and from the middle schools to the high school. These students learned study habits, leadership skills, mixed with other students who would attend their schools next year, met teachers and explored the facilities in their new schools. Chancellor said, “Easing transitions smoothes the path and helps prepare the students for success at a new and more challenging level of learning.”
Other BEP summer camps included the Science, Technology, Engineering and Math camps (STEM), facilitated through partnering with TriCounty Tech, Bartlesville Public School District, and the Lowe Family Young Scholars. These were attended by 145 students. Lowe Family Young Scholars provided scholarships for 54 of the students.
Test prep for ACT/PSAT and AP Readiness attracted another 34 students, and over 350 students participated in an Arts Camp in association with the Boys and Girls Club and Teen Center where BPS teachers helped instruct and prepare students for a public showing of their work at the Bartlesville Community Center. An additional 240 students took advantage of a science camp and 100 students were taken to the Oklahoma Aquarium to learn about educational issues dealing with the ocean and Oklahoma waters.
Chancellor went on to state, “the summer programs gave the students an early look at many of the educational opportunities they will encounter during the coming year.” Many of these summer programs will be continued in 2017, and specific programs will be announced by January 2017.