How and where do we sign up for Summer Enrichment?
Registration for the summer enrichment program opens on Monday, May 1, 2023. Families can return to this page to access the application as soon as it is available.
We will also announce via Front Porch Forum, the Superintendent’s newsletter, and school newsletters, social media and administrative offices when applications are available.
About WonderKids Summer Enrichment
Our summer enrichment program is open and free of charge to all children grades K-8 living in Craftsbury, Greensboro, Hardwick, Stannard, Wolcott, and Woodbury. Our program will begin on Monday, July 10, operate Monday through Friday, and end on Friday, August 11. Students may arrive at 8:30 AM if they would like breakfast. Our enrichment starts at 9:00 AM and students must be picked up at 3:00 PM each day. The program will take place at Hardwick Elementary School. Breakfast, lunch, and snacks will be provided throughout the day.
**Our theme this summer is "Friends Around the World,"**and is an exploration of the many things that people all over the world have in common—and what makes us different. From what we eat to the games we play, and from the art our cultures produce to the type of music we enjoy and even how we interact with nature—we'll explore these concepts and more all while interacting with the beautiful part of the world and community in which we live. Together we will do crafts, prepare food, make music, tell stories, create art, and spend lots of time outside swimming, gardening, hiking, and playing games.
Registration opens on Monday, May1, online and on paper, and will continue until all our spaces are filled. Paper registration forms will be available through your school offices.
Note: these jobs are available through Rural Arts Collaborative, and are not employees of OSSU.
Who runs/what is the afterschool program now?
Rural Arts Collaborative, an arts organization based in Greensboro, has been piloting a small afterschool program in Craftsbury called WonderKids. This is a comprehensive program offering nutritional, academic, and enrichment opportunities to support children grades K-8 in the after school hours. WonderKids has been funded by the Vermont Afterschool Expanding Access Grant since June 2022, and in July 2023 OSSU will contract the WonderKids program to establish additional local sites serving all OSSU towns. Rural Arts Collaborative will continue to incubate the program, lending experience and support to the new WonderKids Director ensuring a smooth transition from one entity to the next as WonderKids begins to stand on its own.
A New Model for Afterschool Programming in OSSU
The statewide afterschool network is working to ensure that all Vermont kids have access to high quality afterschool programs. It is our collective responsibility to create and sustain safe, reliable, and enriching programs so that children in Orleans Southwest Supervisory Union are active, connected, engaged, and heard.
After more than 20 years of serving students in OSSU, the REACH! Afterschool Program, along with teachers, children, and families, felt the additional stresses of operating during the Pandemic. The staffing model and program structure spread resources too thin, and operating over capacity generated a culture of burnout and unsustainability. In fall 2022, this program was suspended due to a lack of available staff and to reevaluate how OSSU can offer afterschool and summer programming to its communities.
Fortunately, REACH! had cultivated numerous community partnerships which yielded individuals looking to pitch in and problem solve so that we could begin offering programs again. A new model has been created, which is funded initially and in part by a State of Vermont Set-Aside Grant as part of the American Recovery Plan. The next steps are to hire an afterschool program leader who will work with the Supervisory Union, schools, families, and community organizations to implement this model.
A summer enrichment program for all elementary-aged students will recommence in July 2023.
What is the WonderKids model?
WonderKids utilizes the synergy of schools, families, and community resources to expand opportunities for youth. WonderKids Afterschool manages the business aspects of afterschool (staffing, financial management, program development, and quality assurance) and organizes community resources to provide dynamic, fun, creative activities for kids after school. WonderKids applies national research and evidence-based practices to its structure and activities that are proven to accelerate positive student outcomes. A three pillar partnership between OSSU, WonderKids, and the Community is integral to the success of this new model.
OSSU partners with WonderKids to ensure the sites are safe, accessible, and that the needs of students in the Supervisory Union are met.
Community assets like public libraries, organizations, natural resources, and recreational groups provide fun, dynamic, educational enrichment experiences for the kids.
Families of participants and participants themselves partner in this model, helping to guide program offerings, provide support through fundraising efforts, and assist staff with programs when possible.
Spring 2023 Afterschool Program
We continue to offer the WonderKids program at Craftsbury Common to all OSSU students, in collaboration with Rural Arts Collaborative, for the remainder of this school year.
WonderKids will do their best to accommodate transportation requests if the bussing schedules allow for it. If transportation is the only reason you have not joined the Craftsbury program, please reach out to email@example.com.
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