Camps available for BPS students

Bartlesville Public School students will have multiple opportunities to learn in fun and engaging ways this summer with a collaborative effort between several different organizations.

Bartlesville Education Promise, a nonprofit organization set up to improve educational opportunities and graduation rates for Bartlesville students, spearheaded the summer camps with the help of Bartlesville Public Schools, Tri County Tech and the Barry W. Lowe and Karen Sue Lowe Foundation.

Additional financial support is provided by Phillips 66, ConocoPhillips, Chevron Phillips Chemical, ABB and the Parson Foundation.

The opportunities for students are being provided at low cost to students, and some students could be eligible for scholarships for the summer programs.

Bartlesville Education Promise Chairman Martin Garber said the summer camps are a great way for Bartlesville students to learn, while still having fun.

“We want to provide these camps to benefit the students of Bartlesville, no matter their background,” he said. “Many of our programs are geared for those students who are most at-risk for not completing their education. We want to show them learning can be productive and fun at the same time.”

The summer camps kick off June 5, with an ACT Test Prep class at Bartlesville High School for incoming freshmen and sophomores. On the same day, a special science, technology, engineering and math camp for seventh grade through ninth grade will be held at Tri County Tech.

Kerensa Kester, Tri County Tech’s chief instructional officer, said the program has been expanded this year from three topics of interest to six topics — electronics, engineering, robotics, “computer geek” to explore careers in computer science, a chef camp for culinary interests, and “lab rats” to learn about laboratory sciences.

“These are exciting and fun hands-on camps for kids to learn all about the field of STEM,” Kester said. “We are so thankful for the partnership with Bartlesville Education Promise, Bartlesville Public Schools and the Lowe Foundation to bring these summer camps to Tri County. Without these partnerships, students in Bartlesville would have to travel far away from home to get this experience. We are excited about the expansion from last year to offer more programs for the students.”

The first STEM camps at Tri County Tech will be immediately followed by another camp for younger students from June 12-16. Kester said the cost to attend either camp is $245. For students who have financial concerns, scholarships for the STEM camps are available thanks to the Lowe Foundation.

To apply for scholarship opportunities, contact counselors at Bartlesville High School, Madison Middle School or Central Middle School. The deadline for registration, for either a scholarship or for for students able to afford the full cost, is May 15.

For Bartlesville Public Schools’ Summer Institute, which includes the ACT Test Prep and six other programs throughout the summer, the cost is only $10 for registration for each camp. Registration closes on May 25.

Programs include a summer arts camp in partnership with the Boys and Girls Club of Bartlesville, Prep for Accelerated English, Fundamentals of Composition for writing skills, a High School Fundamentals camp for incoming freshmen, and transition camps at Bartlesville’s two middle schools for incoming sixth-graders.

Bartlesville High School principal LaDonna Chancellor said the participants in the courses from last year have shown an increased engagement in school.

“These students continue to excel and learn about what school life is all about,” she said. “We monitored the students who participated in last year’s camps throughout the school year and we have see so many improvements. I’ve had students tell me if it weren’t for the summer institute, they may be on a different path that would not be as successful. This is such a great program, and thanks to Bartlesville Education Promise and the support of the community, these camps are making a huge difference.”

Bartlesville Education Promise vice chairman Ginger Griffin said the whole point of the organization and the summer camps is to help Bartlesville students on a path to success.

“We are proud to step up and help solve the problems that arise from at-risk students,” Griffin said. “We want these students to be successful. A lot of the time, they don’t have the support from a good family environment. We want to be able to help in whatever way we can to help these kids to be successful.”

For more information about the Summer Institutes at Bartlesville Public Schools, contact Bartlesville counselors at BHS, Central or Madison.

The activities of Bartlesville Education Promise are funded by individuals, local and national businesses and foundations. Tax deductible donations can be made through the Bartlesville Community Foundation with a memo for BEP to P.O. Box 2323, Bartlesville, OK 74005.

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