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Learning never stops at Clark

If 10-year-old Walter Woods had it his way, he would attend school every day for the entire year. Walter is in luck.

Thanks to the summer enrichment program at Clark Elementary, students like Walter can spend the summer sharpening math, reading and artistic skills with kindergarten through fifth grade students from Clark and Payne Elementary.

“The reason why I like coming here is to learn my math, like dividing, subtracting and multiplication,” Walter said.

Ja’eya Thomas, 7, also attended the summer program for the love of learning.

“I’m here because I need help with reading,” Ja’eya said. “I have also learned how to take away with high numbers, read better and write my letters on the lines.”

The schools have partnered, holding classes at Clark this summer, and plans go to Payne next summer.

“We were both going to do a program, but instead of doing it in two separate programs, it was more cost effective to do one,” Larkin said.

Teachers from both schools, such as Payne kindergarten teacher Dorothy Johnson, hold math, reading and art classes for the students. For the summer enrichment, Johnson teaches the rising second grade students.

“We are doing reading comprehension, reading vocabulary, math skills and double digits in math,” Johnson said. “They are also practicing writing skills. It’s helping a lot of them out because when they go to second grade, they are going to be ready.”

Rising first and several rising second grade students meet only Monday and Tuesday to review skills of the previous grade.

“These are our children that needed just a little extra push to prepare them for the next grade,” Larkin said.

Second grade students are placed in the review classes twice per week or in the four-day summer enrichment classes based on student academic need.

All grade-level summer curriculum created by Clark and Payne adheres to the standards of the Alabama Reading and Mathematics Test, ARMT, and the Stanford Achievement Test, SAT 10. ARMT is for Selma City and Dallas County students in third through eighth grade and SAT 10 is for students third through eighth grade.

Results from the tests determine if a school passes the Adequate Yearly Progress report. This standard is part of the No Child Left Behind initiative to have all schools and systems achieve 100 percent of their accountability goals each year in reading, math and other factors such as attendance or dropout rate.

The summer enrichment program will continue until July 9.