Does your child like exploring math and art with Legos? Do they like to express themselves through movement? Do they like gymnastics or martial arts, or would hands-on science and team building be more interesting?
From Glenwood Springs to Rifle, community organizations have offered Friday and after-school opportunities to parents and students in the district.
Garfield School District Re-2 made the transition to a four-day school week this year as one of many budget-cutting measures. As a result of the modified school days and changing support for teachers and students during the school week, the district recognized a need for activities for students on Fridays. After-school programs that were not supported by a grant or outside funding were also cut as part of the budget process.
"We understand that programs on Fridays and after-school support our families and our students," said Superintendent Susan Birdsey. "However, they are programs the school district cannot provide, due to budget constraints. We are very fortunate to have exceptional community leaders and organizations that have stepped up to provide engaging programming for our students on Fridays and after school."
All of these programs are fee-based, and vary by program. This information can also be found on the Re-2 website, www.garfieldre2.org, under the "Parents" tab at the top of the page.
• The Glenwood Springs Center for the Arts is providing a full day of activities for 5- to 12-year-olds, including yoga, dance, music lessons and pottery. The program begins at 7:30 a.m. and ends at 5:30 p.m. Call 945-2414 for information.
• The New Castle Recreation Department is offering "Out of the Woods" art classes and martial arts classes. Times and ages vary for these programs. Call 984-3352 for information.
• Colorado Mountain College in Rifle has put together Kids Camp activities - day-long classes (8 a.m. to 4 p.m.) for 7- to 14-year-olds - developed around a central theme, such as Oceans and Watersheds, Eagle Springs Organic Farm Experience, and Math With Legos. Call 625-1871 for information.
• At Wamsley Elementary School in Rifle, students from kindergarten through fifth grade can participate in Project Learn. From 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., students will participate in music, mixed media arts, hands-on science and team building. Call 319-9137 for information.
• ArtillumA Dance Company has fashioned a fifth-day enrichment program from for ages 7-13 with many community members bringing their experience to the program. Call 625-5616 for information.
• Rifle Recreation and Synergy Gymnastics offer gymnastics classes at the Rifle Fitness Center. Classes for 6 - to 8-year-olds are from 12:30-1:25 p.m., and classes for 8- to 11-year-olds are from 1:30-2:25 p.m. Call 665-6577 for information.
• Garfield Public Libraries will offer "The Fifth Element" in Rifle, Silt and New Castle Branch Libraries every Friday, except student holidays. The Fifth Element will offer two-hour classes, taught by Re-2 teachers, in math, science, art and music. Two sessions will be held every Friday afternoon, one for kindergartners through second-graders, and one for third- and fourth-graders, starting Oct. 26. Each class will be limited to 25 students, on a first-come, first-served basis. Parents are encouraged to call the library or go online to preregister for this program. Contact Kelsy at 625-4270 for information.
• As an after-school program option, "Beyond the Bell" is now up and running at Kathryn Senor Elementary for students 5-12 years of age. The program includes a snack, organized activities and homework help after school from 3:50-6 p.m. Programming includes cooking, arts and crafts, sports and gym games and drama. Call (707) 631-3993 for information.
Multiple opportunities for student engagement, learning and fun abound in the community on Friday and after-school due to the hard work and dedication of these great community organizations.