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Jefferson Elementary providing after-school program

Published: Mar. 3, 2021 at 9:03 PM EST
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - School officials say some Jefferson Elementary students are falling behind as the pandemic drags on.

To combat this, the school has started the “Extended Hours Program” to help them get back on track.

“We know that some students are lacking skills. Some students need to polish up on some skills and we’re providing that opportunity,” says Wood County Schools superintendent, Will Hosaflook. “So, we have a lot of opportunities here and our administration, our teachers they’ve done a tremendous job in making that come into fruition.”

Officials say nearly 70 students are already participating in this after school program—Tuesday through Thursday. Many of them getting some much-needed one-on-one time.

Thirteen teachers are working with students ranging from kindergarteners to fifth graders.

“It’s so important to be face-to-face with a teacher and not necessarily on a computer. We were doing the best that we could at the time, but thankfully things have opened up and we are back in school” says Jefferson Elementary Center principal, Julie Gibson. “So, being face-to-face with that teacher is really going to help those students.”

The in-person interactions aren’t just for academics, but for the social and emotional aspect as well.

Hosaflook says, “We need our kids and the kids need us. And we’re here to provide that and we just want to provide as many opportunities as we can to help develop the child in their entirety. Rather than just their academic part. Because there are social needs, there are emotional needs. And we love our kids. We’re going to do whatever it takes to make this work.”

The program is on its third week. Already, school officials say that student morale is up at Jefferson Elementary.

“Motivation to come to school and especially when they get to stay after on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday; they’re very excited about it,” says Gibson.

The program will continue until the week before spring break when officials will look over the results for the students.

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