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Kids Aspire is a fiscally neutral pilot program that will afford students ages 6-14 participating in the afterschool activities at Miami-Dade County Parks assistance with their homework or any area of study in which they are having difficulty. Additionally, this program offers to teach children on different areas of health awareness.
There has been an increasing need for afterschool educational support programs, especially in areas where families encounter financial challenges. This program will invest in children by helping them with their studies, as well as increasing their awareness on the importance of good health.
Miami-Dade County Parks will provide a complete report each semester using the pre-test, mid-test, and post-test to track the progress of each student. This will allow us to determine the effectiveness of the program.
In the event the program proves to be successful, the next step will be to acquire funding through grants or other means to help extend this program to other parks, which will continually be monitored by this office (Office of Community Advocacy).
Afterschool Homework Assistance Program
The Afterschool Homework Assistance Program, Kids Aspire has been conceptualized as a partnership between:
- Miami-Dade County Parks Department
- Florida Department of Health in Miami-Dade
- Miami-Dade County Public Schools
- Goodwill Ambassadors Program
- Miami-Dade County Cooperative Extension Services under the Department of Regulatory and Economic Resources in partnership with The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS).
Their roles are envisioned to be as follows:
- The Miami-Dade County Parks Department has identified four (4) locations for this pilot program, where the participants either enrolled on a scholarship or reduced fee. These parks stand out as high-need areas given the high rate of students qualifying for free or reduced lunch in schools surrounding the parks, coupled with household size and overall poverty level of the areas.
- The Florida Department of Health in Miami-Dade has committed to provide nurses and/or health instructors that will educate children in the three basic categories of: dental health, personal hygiene, and dietary guidelines. The department’s lead poisoning (prevention?) program will also be made available to raise awareness of environmental health risks in homes caused by exposure to lead and other harmful environmental hazards.
- Miami-Dade County Public Schools would provide teachers that will assist children in their homework or any area of study in which they are having difficulty.
- The Goodwill Ambassadors will create awareness about the Miami-Dade County Coordinated Response Team (MDC-CRT), as well as promote citizen’s goodwill.
- Miami-Dade County Cooperative Extension (a partnership between Miami-Dade County, University of Florida/IFAS and USDA) will provide monthly or as needed hands-on programming about healthy lifestyles and environmental issues provided by the Extension staff from the 4-H/Youth Development Program area, Family Nutrition Programs (FNP) and the Florida Yards and Neighborhoods Program area. http://miami-dade.ifas.ufl.edu/
Requirements for participating
In order to participate in the Afterschool Homework Assistance Program:
- All teachers and instructors will be required to do a background check or provide a copy from Miami-Dade County Public Schools.
- Teachers’ required schedule will be one (1) hour a day, five (5) days a week throughout the year, as agreed with the Miami-Dade County Parks Department.
- All children ages 6-14 enrolled in the afterschool program will be eligible to participate.
- County to work with the School Board to provide a pre-test, mid-test, and post-test to students participating in the program to measure improvements.
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