A national nonprofit founded in 1992

WJLA: Nonprofit Summer Enrichment Program Helps Close Achievement Gap in Md.

Image removed.

BY KELLYE LYNN/ABC7 | WEDNESDAY, JULY 20TH 2016

Image removed.
Nonprofit summer enrichment program helps close achievement gap in Md. (ABC7) | View photo gallery

SILVER SPRING, Md. (ABC7) - School is in session at Cresthaven Elementary in Silver Spring, Md., even though it's July.

"I'm here because I want to get more education," said student Nat'eya Spriggs.

Spriggs has come to the right place. The Building Educated Leaders for Life (BELL) summer enrichment program is helping the fourth grader improve her reading and math.

"We are a nonprofit organization that comes into schools through the summer and afterschool programs to close the achievement gap and also the opportunity gap for children," Damon Johnson, BELL Regional Director, said.

Many of the students in the program have been experiencing academic difficulties at their home schools and are at risk of falling even farther behind during the summer months.

"We're not only able to stop that loss of learning we're also able to show gains. 1.5 month gains in a five week program," Johnson said.

Oliver Cruz is hoping to bring up his math scores.

"Right here, I learn multiplication so I can get better at it," Cruz said.

Every day breakfast and lunch are served and in the afternoon students attend enrichment classes like sign language, technology, art and drama. The free program is in its first year in Montgomery County and students are enthusiastic.

"If their old school is so, so, hard they can come here and they can learn better," said Cruz.

BELL does not only focus on academic enrichment, students leave the classroom to go on field trips on Fridays.

Related News

Community Support Image
News

Mobilizing to Support Our Partners' Success

Dear Friends, For all of us, this past week’s daycare and school closings due to COVID-19 have presented a multitude of new challenges and experiences. We at BellXcel and our affiliate the Sperling Center for Research and Innovation (SCRI) have thought deeply about our role and we are putting into...
Sperling Center for Research and Innovation Main Image
News

Welcome to BellXcel's Sperling Center for Research and Innovation

We have exciting news to share. BellXcel has launched the Sperling Center for Research and Innovation (SCRI). Named in honor of our longtime board chair, Laurene Sperling, the Center is dedicated to increasing the quality and impact of youth-serving organizations by making evidence actionable. Too...
Educators of the Year in Montgomery, Alabama
News

BellXcel Names Educators of the Year

MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA — BellXcel is pleased to recognize Darryl Woods and Connel VanDiver with its Educator of the Year award. The Montgomery, AL, educators are essential to delivering dynamic, evidence-based summer learning with measurable outcomes at the YMCA of Greater Montgomery’s Power Scholar...