Eau Claire (WQOW) - After 16 years, an Eau Claire elementary school is forced to end its after school program, which has impacted over 1,000 area kids.
Students who were a part of Longfellow Elementary's 21st Century Community Learning Center (CLC) agreed the program helped them learn better in school, and gave them experiences outside the classroom. The CLC was started in 2002 at Longfellow as a way to give academic and activity enrichment to kids who needed it. The program was primarily funded by a state grant, until now.
"A lot of our kids are going to miss out on it, and just the social aspect of it, and the ripple effect to the community will be huge," said enrichment coordinator Holly Larson. "It's just such an amazing program, and our kids love it and we have worked really, really hard to create a program our kids would love. So, to lose that is devastating."
Longfellow has an annual fundraiser, the Jeanne Richie Memorial Puddle Jump, to help supplement costs. Larson guesses they may only have enough money to support around half of the 70 students reached each year through the CLC. However, Longfellow plans to have some sort of after-school program next year.
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