Involved Students Shine

By: Elizabeth Donatelli
By: Elizabeth Donatelli

April 18, 2005

One way to keep kids out of trouble is to get them more involved in after-school programs. On Monday night, April 18, the Commission on Children and Families Youth Asset shared some interesting ideas with the Charlottesville City Council on making our children more successful

The report focuses on what students do outside the classroom, specifically after-school activities, or lack thereof.

The Commission on Children and Families Youth Asset presented research that found many youth only participate in after-school activities, if their friends do. They recommended that programs look to recruit groups instead of individuals. They also found finances, entry fees, and lack of transportation, to be a few deterrents.

"Youth who are involved in productive activities are more likely to have academic success, to have positive youth development. One of the things we have is a misconception that middle and high school youth can be on their own," said Winx Lawrence who is with the Assets For Youth Work Group and involved in this current research.

But it's when they are on their own that they are most likely to make poor decisions. The research describes after-school programs as a protective factor for youth.

Students asked to extend hours in school gyms and computer labs as well as public swimming pools. They were also interested in opening up a teen club.

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