Bennett’s Mill considering YMCA after school program

Bennett’s Mill Principal Jason Byars is planning to partner with the local YMCA to provide an after school program, assuming he can garner enough interest from parents.

Parish Underwood, Executive Director of Fayette Family YMCA, said at last week’s Board of Education meeting that the program would be similar to programs already operated in Coweta County and would include recreational and instructional elements.

Underwood said the Coweta programs are entering year three and have been successful. He said that the YMCA would provide the staff, but that school staff might also be used “where appropriate,” and added that programs in other areas do use some school employees.

The program is expected to cost around $10 per day and run five days a week, with a sliding scale for fees. The students would attend the program between 4 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. each day.

Underwood said parents could expect their students to complete their homework during this time, in addition to having recreation and a portion for instruction. It was noted also that curriculum coordinators within the district could be consulted to ensure that instruction is in line with existing standards.

Byars noted that he had not yet directly gauged parent interest in the program as he was waiting for board approval, but he estimated it might draw 30 to 50 students in its first year.

Deputy Superintendent Sam Sweat noted that the idea was especially suited to Bennett’s Mill as the Fayette Family YMCA is located less than a mile from the school.

The board voted to allow Byars to put the idea out to parents and find out whether interest was sufficient to give the program a try.

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