By Taylor Gabbey, HRI Graduate Assistant
The Black Child Development Institute of Greensboro is an organization dedicated to protecting the quality of life for school-age children in Greensboro and surrounding areas. They seek to develop the skills children need to be successful and work to get kids excited about learning and school. The Black Child Development Institute provides services for children of all races, cultures, spiritualities, and nationalities, offering tutoring programs for children ages 1st through 12th grade.
BCDI provides individualized tutoring sessions in literacy and math. Assessment of each child’s skill level allows them to determine what each child needs to focus on, be that vocabulary growth, reading comprehension, phonetic awareness, etc. Children and parents can also request homework assistance or specific skill development. BCDI works hard to keep tutoring resources accessible and affordable, and volunteer tutors do their best to ensure their students develop the skills they need to succeed in school, college, work, or wherever else life takes them.
Children in 1st through 5th grade can participate in BCDI’s Bridge Program. This program places emphasis on reading comprehension during the early years. “Reading is an important skill,” says Kenisha Trought, family engagement specialist for BCDI of Greensboro. “If you don’t know how to read, you won’t get very far.” The program is offered to students attending Bluford STEM Academy, Simkins Elementary, and Washington Montessori Elementary, as well as local charter schools and homeschoolers. Running from October to June, the Bridge Program supplements literacy development with STEM, the arts, career development skills, and even field trips. Enrollment for this year’s Bridge Program opens September 4th.
For the Black Child Development Institute, learning doesn’t pause in the summer. In order to combat learning loss and provide children with a constructive way to spend the summer months, BCDI is partnered with the Freedom School in offering an enriching summer program. The Freedom School keeps the focus on literacy while also incorporating events like college fairs, discussions with local professionals, and National Day of Social Justice, where kids have the opportunity to discuss social issues important to them and develop their own personal voices.
Most importantly, the leadership skills and confidence kids build in the Freedom School and BCDI encourage them to persevere and succeed, both in school and outside of it. As Ms. Trought says, “We can’t want success for you. You have to want it for yourself.”