Hartford Public Library has been awarded a $646,000 state grant to run an after-school program at Hartford Public High School for the next five years, library officials said.
Starting in September, the library's partnership with Hartford Public's Law and Government Academy will serve 80 students four days a week after school and on Saturdays, offering academic tutoring and enrichment activities that include the arts.
The Owl Enrichment Center, named after the school mascot, will also run during July and August and feature an empowerment program for parents and guardians, said Matthew Poland, the library's chief executive officer.
A program coordinator, two certified teachers and several tutors are expected to be working with students, who will be required to undergo a college application process and attend a financial planning workshop, Poland said.
The library received the 21st Century Community Learning Center grant from the state Department of Education after collaborating with Hartford Public High School over the past two years.
The Mark Twain library branch has been located in the school's Lewis Fox Media Center since 2011.
The new arrangement represents "very much of a landmark for a public library to be engaged in that kind of programming with a school system," said Poland, who serves as chairman of the Hartford school board.
In a statement this week, Poland added that the goal is for students to "become stronger readers, writers and critical thinkers who are more engaged in school and are inspired to contribute to society in productive and meaningful ways."
Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant.
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