Updated 4:30 p.m.
By CHRISTINA RITCHIE ROGERS
Davidson’s Ada Jenkins Center will expand its Learn Works after-school program this fall when it adds 30 students in grades 1-5 from J.V. Washam Elementary School in Cornelius. The regional community services center also plans a satellite program at St. Alban’s Episcopal Church that for the first time will allow Learn Works to serve sixth graders.
At St. Alban’s, the center will offer a “bridge” program for 15 sixth graders transitioning to Bailey Middle School, Ada Jenkins board member Rodney Short told Cornelius Commissioners Monday. Ada Jenkins officials said this week the program would be for current fifth graders already in the Learn Works program.
The church is a good location for the satellite middle school “bridge” program, Mr. Short said, because members of the church already have been tutoring Bailey students. And the church is near Davidson College, whose students account for 95 percent of Ada Jenkins’ volunteers.
Currently, Learn Works serves about 30 students from Davidson Elementary School and 30 from Cornelius Elementary. The schools recommend students for the program, many of whom are low-income,and demand is high, officials say.
Even with the additional 30 from J.V. Washam in the fall, the program still will have an “unofficial waiting list” of more than 200, Mr. Short said. (Ada Jenkins officials have said the program does not have a formal waiting list.)
Meanwhile, the Boys and Girls Club, which currently leases space in the Ada Jenkins Center’s on Gamble Street, is continuing its search for a new home.
The club’s lease was up March 15, but Ada Jenkins Center is letting hte program keep its classrooms until the end of July, Ada Jenkins director Georgia Krueger said Thursday. Ada Jenkins eventually plans to take over the classrooms space to house the additional Learn Works students.
Ms. Krueger said Ada Jenkins officials are continuing to help the Boys & Girls Club search for new space. Boys & Girls Club officials said in February they hope to find another location in Davidson.
The Davidson club is the smallest of eight in the region operated by Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Charlotte. It’s the only one that currently serves only teens, executive director Marty Clary told DavidsonNews.net in February.
CORRECTION: This story has been updated to correct an error regarding the future of the Boys & Girls Club. Contrary to the original version of the article, the club has not yet found new space.