Why After School Enrichment Programs Are So Important

Principals and district administrators have a complicated job. As a school leader, you want overall performance to improve and you want to see individual students develop with a variety of skills to take to the next level. Properly managed after school enrichment programs can make that job much easier.

Extending the school day beyond the traditional academic day into after school enrichment programs is a win/win for the entire community. Students get to engage with exciting subjects in a relaxed setting, parents get to know their kids are in a safe, stimulating environment, and district administrators know that they are accomplishing their mission to educate the “whole child,” that can excel in today’s world.

All that comes from a slate of after school enrichment activities that appeal to diverse interests, from STEM to athletics to art, all on school grounds, supervised and administered by highly qualified professionals.

Flex Academies is the leader in providing the support, expertise and vendor partnerships that can make an after school environment like this a reality.

Enrichment Encourages The Whole Student

Danny Vogelman, principal at Washington Episcopal School in Bethesda, Maryland, helped launch Flex Academies. Now he runs a school that benefits from the after school enrichment programs that Flex Academies implements and manages. In an interview earlier in 2016, Vogelman talked about  why he thinks after school activities are so important to student development.

“It allows you, as a school, to develop children’s skills, develop their interest levels in things that you either don’t have time to do or you don’t have the resources to do during the school day,” he said. “So to me, it helps develop the whole child.”

There is a reason that after school enrichment has expanded worldwide in recent decades. It works! Evidence supports the claim that more learning time, especially where students engage more deeply with subjects they enjoy, helps develop high-achieving, well-rounded individuals.

Schools Need Help

As an administrator, Vogelman is well aware that schools need to supplement offerings with outside vendors, rather than place an additional burden on teachers.

“When it comes to time for after school activities, first of all, your teachers have worked exceptionally hard all day,” he said. “They have papers to grade, they have planning that they have to do, they have their own families that they have to get home to.”

Flex Academies can help ease that workload on school staff by providing pre-screened certified vendors who are experts in their fields, as well as  an onsite coordinator to handle all program logistics, including vendor assignments.

“I think what that provides is a greater opportunity to bring people in with various skills, possibly skills and backgrounds that our teachers don’t have,” Vogelman said. “It allows you to offer a wider range of activities for the kids.”

And outsourcing the management of after school enrichment programs frees up front-office staff in the late afternoons. That staff is busy and engaged in the daily chaos of running a school. The onsite coordinator is very real benefit for those workers.

"The principals at our partner schools love what Flex does to lighten the load on their teachers and staff," said Joshua Chernikoff, managing partner of Flex Academies. "Administrators tell us they rest easy knowing we have all the logistics under control."

Does it sound like Flex Academies could make your after school program even better than it currently is? Contact us to learn how we can make your after school enrichment programs the best they can be while taking responsibility off your staff’s shoulders!