School’s Out Recap for 2018 School Year: The United Way Schools Out “Literacy Leaders” after-school program has launched in the Riley Park/Sunset area for grades 1-3 at 5 elementary schools that include Wolfe, Brock, David Livingstone, Mackenzie, and Simon Fraser. The program promotes the inclusion of 100 children who are engaged in social emotional learning and community engagement activities with an emphasis on building resilience, leadership, empowerment, and creating a sense of belonging. The program supports children’s health and well-being, while providing positive after-school activities that explore: child rights, storytelling, academic, social, and physical literacy, including outdoor play. The program has positively impacted child participants who have benefited from increased social connections, a productive and safe space to spend their after-school hours.
C.C- Story of social inclusion: School’s Out encourages participation for all children and promotes inclusion. We have had several children in the autism spectrum with various abilities and challenges participate this year-in particular two boys on the spectrum with completely different needs. We became familiar with both families and one of them in particular was harder to connect with as mom was always working. We managed to connect with Grandma as she was the main point of contact for pick-ups but she did not speak English. A wrap around approach was taken with the teacher and the 1-1 support worker at the school to get a better understanding of needs and learning techniques for this child. At the start of the school year, we found out that the mom was very hesitant to register her son in the beginning and that he has never participated in any after school programs because of her fear with his struggles with transitions and flexibility. Through his participation in School’s Out his social skills are beginning to flourish and he has been invited to his first birthday party.
-Grade.2 Student at General Wolfe Elementary-