BEST is an afterschool program that serves disadvantaged youth, boosts academic achievement, and provides enrichment opportunities that change lives. BEST Afterschool offers:
· Small group instruction and tutoring in reading and math
· Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) opportunities
· Art and Music
· Hot supper
· Transportation home
BEST Afterschool program emphasizes academic learning opportunities, recreational explorations, building healthy bodies, and growing to support one another.
Connection to school day (district program) – The BEST Afterschool program is a district program providing before and after school activities at six Eugene School District 4J sites. BEST offers two middle school programs and four elementary programs. BEST is located in the school building, sharing day time staff, and connections with teachers and educational assistants to provide continuity and collaboration through to after school activities.
BEST Afterschool strives to build a sense of community within the school to learn and grow.
Targeted small group interventions aligned with the school day, in reading and/ or math at each elementary site. Staff is hired to extend the learning opportunity, building upon established school culture and relationships. BEST students have shown significantly greater academic gains than students in the school who did not attend the program.
Partnerships include the following: city of Eugene, Eugene Springfield Youth Orchestra (ESYO), Eugene Symphony, School Garden Project, PAAWS (People and Animals Who Serve), Eugene Rotary Club, Eugene Education Foundation, University of Oregon (federal work-study, co-op, language program), and volunteers. One of the many unique features about BEST is the number of partners we have attached to our programs. These partnerships add to the quality of our program offerings (STEM in the garden is pictured above from The School Garden Project), community awareness of BEST, common grant opportunities, and programming collaboration. Partnerships are used throughout the day of our program from intervention time with University of Oregon students to creative music and art lessons during enrichment time.
AVID: Our middle school programs have an extra homework support aspect focusing on AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination). Our staff received AVID training and on-going AVID professional development to provide college and career readiness skill building. This includes organization, note taking, study prep, and field trips.
Field Trips – It is an important part of BEST to offer students the opportunity to explore their community and visit college programs. This picture is from a Future Duck event where the students were introduced on stage and met Puddles, the University of Oregon mascot.
Family Events – Each BEST site offers monthly family events, and some of those events partner with school day activities. These events aim to explore family values and culture, display what their BEST students have been working on, and to better get to know each other and build community.
Unique Opportunities not possible during the school day – BEST students are able to enjoy the benefits of a well-established program. BEST Afterschool has been in Eugene School District 4J since 2000, offering high quality out of school time activities. Here BEST students play their recorders on live radio as selected winners for their age group.
The Research Institute : Western Oregon University : 345 N. Monmouth Ave. : Monmouth, OR 97361
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