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Carthage Central after-school program targets college readiness

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WEST CARTHAGE — Carthage High School students will reap the rewards of $1.3 million grant from the 21st Century Community Learning Centers program.

CASEWorks, a college and career readiness after-school program, has been designed in conjunction with the grant’s requirements. It will benefit freshmen through seniors.

“We’re offering programs that aren’t available during the school day — stuff they’re not able to do during the day because of the academic demands teachers have,” said Marilyn Bish, the district’s director of grants and projects.

Students may enroll in any of three 10-week sessions throughout the 2013-14 school year. Each session will feature four “academies” geared toward college and career readiness and students’ interests. Available academies are performing arts, community service, entrepreneurship, and science, math, technology and engineering.

Students will learn work skills relevant to their chosen academy, as well as financial literacy, social skills and how to do an interview.

The program will run from 2:06 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. The first session begins Nov. 12 and runs until Jan. 24. The second session will begin in February, with the third picking up in April. An estimated 70 students can participate per session.

“A very exciting part of the program is the entrepreneurship program, which is going to be led by Cornell Cooperative Extension. They will work with students to generate a business plan, product, to market that product and to fund future programs for CASEWorks,” Ms. Bish said.

Community internships also will be open to juniors and seniors in the program.

Other partners with the program are Carthage Area Chamber of Commerce, Carthage YMCA and Onondaga Community College.

Carthage also has CASE — Carthage After School Enrichment program — for elementary pupils. CASE has grown from 20 children at the start of the program six years ago to more than 200.

“CASEWorks will give students a vision of themselves now, and for the future, in the world of work and/or college,” Ms. Bish said.

During each session, students also will be equipped with an iPad and given a family pass to the Carthage YMCA, 250 State St.

Students with conflicting schedules still will be welcome to join the group. However, they must be able to maintain an 80 percent attendance record.

The school will host a one-hour parent and student informational meeting at 5:30 p.m. Oct. 15 in the high school library.

Additional questions may be directed to Jeanne Korman at jkorman@carthagecsd.org, or by phone, 493-5123. Further details and registration forms are available at www.carthagecsd.org, under News.

The program is $10 to register. The fee helps cover costs that the grant does not, such as the free snack provided during meetings.

Volunteers also are being sought to assist educators in each academy.

However, scholarships are available. Forms must be submitted by Nov. 6. Students will be bused home.

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