New Online Tool Helps Parents Find After-School and Summer Programs for Children

Contact:  Rashaan Peek | (704) 335-0100 x222   | rpeek@mecked.org

MeckEd, a non-profit focused on ensuring all young people in Mecklenburg County have access to the skills and experiences they will need to lead productive, successful lives, announced today that their Out of School Time initiative, Charlotte NEXT will launch an online tool called The Locator.  The Locator is designed to assist parents and guardians in locating Out of School Time (OST) programs that match interests, focus areas, age and grade level, time, availability, budget, and transportation requirements.  Users of the program simply go to www.mecked.org, click “The Locator” and follow the directions regarding how to find an After School or Summer Program.

MeckEd launched the Charlotte NEXT Out of School Time (OST) Program Locator (The Locator) on June 9, 2017 in hopes that parents and guardians will have time to benefit from it during the summer.

Over 120 program providers submitted information to be included in The Locator.  While all age levels are represented, MeckEd’s focus is centered on middle school age children. Research shows that young people between he ages of 12 and 14 are at a critical juncture and are actively making decisions about who they are now, who they wish to be, and how they see themselves in relationship to the people and the world around them.  Nationally, over 15 million students are alone and unsupervised between the hours of 3pm and 6pm. These hours are associated with high incidents of juvenile crime, and experimentation with drugs, alcohol, cigarettes and sex.  Additionally, for many students who attend middle schools in communities with high concentration of poverty, something as simple as walking home can be the most challenging part of their day. MeckEd and a dedicated consortium of public and private partners are aiming to change that be increasing the number of middle school students, particularly in schools with high concentrations of poverty participating in high quality Out of School Time programs.

The Locator was designed by Visual Risk IQ, a Charlotte based IT firm, in partnership with MeckEd, with initial funding provided by the Wells Fargo Foundation, and the ReEmprise Foundation.  To access The Locator, as well as additional education- based tools visit MeckEd’s website www.mecked.org.

To be included in the next update please complete the CLT Next Locator Submission Form.

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