From the April 2007 Conference Reporter: HPKCC Schools Committee Holds information-sharing and networking confab of area
After School Assets-building Program Providers.
with related reports

Presented by the Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference/Hyde Park Schools Committee and the HPKCC website, Committee Chair Nancy Baum.

Return to the After School Providers databases. Schools and Education Committee home with index to schools and education pages. Schools Committee Assets-Building idea. Promise programs and neighborhoods


The Conference in Action
HPKCC Schools Committee Features “After School Matters”

by Nancy Baum [HPKCC board member and Schools Committee Chair] [From the April 2007 Conference Reporter]

Walking around Hyde Park it is hard to believe that behind those facades of school buildings, churches, synagogues, field houses and storefronts, there is so much activity going on. Hyde Parkers who managed to attend the Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference Schools Committee’s forum “After School Matters” at the Hyde Park Neighborhood Club on March 23, 207 were in for an amazing treat. Emceed by our very own board member, James Harris (whose smooth manner rivals any T.V. host’s), the public was introduced to the forum’s principal speaker, Janet Kafkas, Interim Senior Manager, Urban Group and Operations from the YMCA. She was dynamic and helpful, engaging the audience by first asking them to name a person in their life who had most influenced them. People responded by talking about loving parents and teachers who had changed the course of their lives. Janet continued by talking about how important it is for children to have these people in their lives. She even challenged us to get to know an endangered teenage (you know the kind, who hangs around looking like a prototype for a character in “The Wire”) and rescue them by engaging them little by little in conversation, and eventually leading them to activities that could be life-changing. She brought along helpful handouts for us to read in order to ponder the 40 fundamental building assets that children need t acquire during childhood for success, but that studies she shared show are often not acquired.

The other speakers were just a few of the many activity providers in the neighborhood who explained their programs to the community and how their programs fit into the building assets model. These organizations provide a variety of activities: sports, music, crafts, dancing, cheerleading and even glassblowing. It makes you want to be a kid again. Here is a list of activity providers and their representatives of that evening, followed by a phone number for the organization, website if available and a brief description of what each is all about:

· American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO): Joan Bullen and Vanessa James, 773-324-5424, Ages 4-19. Soccer teams formed.

· Abraham Lincoln Centre, 3858 S. Cottage Grove (53). Rodney Williams, Youth Coordinator, 773-285-1390, Programs and services for families and individuals, child development, full and half-day programs, after-school care.

· Blue Gargoyle, 5638 S. Woodlawn (37). Kathy Barrett, Interim Executive Director, 773-955-4108, Provides tutoring and trains volunteers.

· Chicago Children’s Choir, First Unitarian church, 5650 S. Woodlawn (37). Davin Peelle and Molly Stone, 312-349-8300, Well-known after-school performing choir.

· Creative Mansions, 4745 S. Ellis (15). Marjorie Jones and Sharon Francis, 773-268-6066. Before and after-school programs for ages 5-10’ preschool, recreational summer programs, reading and math enrichment summer camps. [Bills itself as the Christian alternative.]

· Education Station: Natalie Oliver. CMS Marketing West, 312-520-5332. A national tutoring company.

· Hyde Park Development Center [at a private address on South Hyde Park Blvd.] Miss Ahzea, 773-324-0947, Full-day program, 8 am-6 pm, preschool, ages 2-5, Music Together, yoga for kids and more.

· Hyde Park Learning Resources Center, 5114 S. Dorchester. Lillie Goldwin, Director, After school homework support, individual and group tutoring and mentoring.

· Hyde Park Neighborhood Club, 5480 S. Kenwood. Peter Cassel, Executive Director and Holly Leiker, Assistant Director, 773 643-4062, Wide range of activities including open gym, ballet, jazz, tap, martial arts, hip hop, digital music, art, field trips and more.

· Hyde Park Suzuki Institute, United Church of Hyde Park, 1448 E. 53rd St. (15). Lucinda Ali and April Greer, 773-643-1388, Kindermusik, guitar, harp, viola, violin and voice.

· Hyde Park Youth Symphony, Hyde Park Union Church, 5600 S. Woodlawn (37). Mary Naftzger, Board Member. For auditions call William White, 847-651-5055 or Website:

· Indoors/Outdoor Junior Golf and Winter Junior Sno-Gophers Ski Club: Jacqueline Beard,, 773-978-0493. Beginners. Instruction at Golf Driving Range, 63rd and S. Hayes (off of Lake Shore Drive). skiing, day trips and one-week trip.

· Jewish Community Center, 5200 S. Hyde Park Blvd. (15). Michael Goldstein, Director of Programs, 773-753-3080, Early childhood classes, gym, vacation day programs for nursery thru 5th grade, after school programs, grades 1-8, basketball, Tai Kwon Do, swimming, gymnastics, summer camp.

· Joan’s Studio for the Performing Arts, 1438 E. 57thSt. (37). Joan Steggemann, 773-493-9288, Tai Chi, yoga, Indian dance, Music Together, private or group music lessons from birth to adult and more.

· Little Black Pearl, 1060 E. 47th St. Annika Frazier-Muhammad (a parent). Chinyera Moody, Program Director, 773- 285-1211,

· Music Teachers of Hyde Park, Elizabeth LaCroix, 773-324-6250, Has a list of over 50 music teachers for private and group lessons in the area. [Ed.- Also has joint learning and performance camps during school year and summer.]

· Nichols Park Field House and Gym, 135 E. 53rd St.: Heather Kelly, Supervisor and Sonia Smith, Assistant Park Supervisor, 312-747-2703, Day camps, sport for children and adults.

· Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago, 1155 E. 58th St. (37). Carole Krucoff, Director of Education, 773-702-9514, and Jessica Caracci, Education Program Assistant, 773-72-9520, or Family and children programs related to the museum’s extensive Ancient Near East collection.

· University of Chicago Laboratory Schools Summer Programs, 1362 E. 59th St. (37). Ned Reece, Director of Auxiliary Programs, 773-834-7766, Adventure Kids Day Camp, Summer Lab on Stage, Summer School, Sports Camps, Field Study, full day, morning and afternoon programs for children of all ages.

· University of Chicago Summer Sports Programs: Richard Maloney, Director, 5530 S. Ellis, 773-702-9065, http://athletics,, Half-day and full-day programs for ages 6-16, tennis camp for ages 6-14 at the Ratner Center and Stagg Field.

· University of Chicago Office of Neighborhood Relations, 5525 S. Ellis, Rm. 165 (37). Duel Richardson, or Yelene Modley,, 773-834-1935. Many useful programs including credit and non-credit College Bridge, Collegiate Scholars (apply mid-march of freshman year), Special Programs/College Pre (6-12), Young Scholars’ Program for mathematics enthusiasts (7-12).

Activity providers brought along brochures for parents and after the presentations community members and activity providers remained to mingle and share ideas about the programs. Everyone was eager to learn more about one another. Attendees also were provided with the pamphlet “Raising our City Children” produced by 25th District State Rep. Barbara Flynn Currie and Fourth Ward Alderman Toni Preckwinkle, which lists additional local programs available to our children and which can be obtained at both of their offices.

When the Schools committee started this project, with the impetus coming from a dinner discussion with Local Schools Council members who mentioned the need for after-school programs on half-days and other days off, we had no idea what wee were getting into. There must be over two hundred programs available to the youth of our neighborhood. The local public and private schools also provide after-school programs for their own students for a fee. The Schools Committee plans to poll all the activity providers for updated information and eventually provide as complete a list as is humanly possible to post onto the internet in time for the beginning of school next Fall, 2007-08. Eventually we hope to provide a printed list to get into the hands of every parent with school-age children in the area, a daunting project given the vast number of programs available. Adults can volunteer for many of them. Remember, if your child wants an activity you will find tons of information compiled by board member Gary Ossewaarde at

Special thanks to the Hyde Park Neighborhood Club for helping to make this a productive evening and providing big comfortable chairs, and to all the services providers who came to the event, and to the committee members for helping to put it together: Nancy Baum, Chair, Judy Dupont, Annika Frazier-Muhammad, James Harris, Zoe Mikva, Julie Monberg, Gary Ossewaarde, Rev. Larry Turpin, and Julie Woestehoff and to the following businesses and organizations for their support: Century 21 Kennedy, Ryan, Monigal and Associates; Computer Resource Center; and PURE—Parents United for Responsible Education.

If you want to help pm the School Committee, call Nancy Baum at 773-288-5464, or e-mail her at

Correction from the August 2007 Reporter: In the last issue of The Reporter, an article on the After School Forum gave an incorrect address for the Hyde Park Development Center; the correct address is 5325 S. Hyde Park Blvd. The Reporter regrets the error.


Report of the May 30 2007 Schools Committee meeting report. With David Sinski of After School Matters, and others from CPS

By Nancy Baum

David Sinski, Executive Director of After School Matters came to this meeting to talk to us about what the organization does. This includes the following: Gallery 37 (since 1990), a successful summer jobs program in which professional artists work with teens. Job readiness, communication skills, hands-on and project-based (painting, sculpture, performance). Art works created were sold in a store in the Cultural Center and proceeds plowed back into the program. Benches were created for airports, mosaics and mural appeared throughout the city. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Charitable Trust funded a program to reduce unhealthy behavior in teens such as pregnancies, vandalism, etc. Elementary school was a first focus, but After Schools Matters had a program for teenagers. There is a vast network today in Chicago extending to 58 campuses shown on a map that David Sinski brought to the meeting.

David Sinski introduced two colleagues: Patrick Milton (773-553-2134), After School Matters liaison with CPS, Office of Post-Secondary Education; and Trinanein Almo, Regional Operations Manager, Region Four, (312-744-9323), a Hyde Parker working with several schools in Region Four.

After Zoe Mikva explained the history of Canter as a designated middle school (Murray needed space for a Pre-Kindergarten, Ray needed more space), and touted Canter as having a chance to be successful she outlined the Canter funding need for after school program from 3:30-5:30. (Funds are available only from 2:00-3:30 plus discretionary funds of $20.00/hour for teachers who want to stay to do needed programs.) Parents sometimes do not pick up children until 5:30. Canter School is therefore interested in more and better after school programs.

David Sinski explained that After School Matters contracts with independent instructors who submit a 10-week curriculum. In addition it evaluates proposals from teachers’ organizations once a year from late February to early March for the following Fall school session.

Proposals for Summer are accepted in January.

3000 jobs have been created for summer teens working closely with school campuses, parks and libraries. The goal is to reach 50% of a CPS teen population of 109,000 (There are 210,000 teenagers total in the population). Teens work closely with campuses and build on the school day and other activities already in the schools such as public art projects. Organizations involved include Dept. of Youth Services, Blue Gargoyle, the Hyde Park Neighborhood Club, Hyde Park Art Center. To call for grant proposal forms, contact Daisy Lezama, Chicago Dept. of Youth Services, 312-743-0258. Proposals are accepted from groups working with high schoolers, but could be from middle schools or elementary schools.

Lorie Watts Branch, Murray LSC member, wanted to know what can be done for Canter School now, how it is determined where money goes, whether parents get financial support for this, and if Canter could piggy-back on monies allotted to Kenwood which has 7th and 8th grades. The answer is that there is an application process which comes on line when it is available (sic), the programs go to high need communities (based on poverty rate, availability of other youth programs, academics, crime rates, numbers of young people where there are no existing services). There exists an Office of Extended Opportunities, mostly for K-8, which mainly does academic enrichment in math and reading at the initiation of the Community School. Supplemental programs for underperforming schools are already mandated by the No Child Left Behind Act.

Youth action state-funded grants. In this program kids apply on line for 25 available slots. School personnel helps set up interviews. Kids must commit and can’t wait to see if they get on the basketball team, for instance. Student must exhibit skills involved in the program, e.g., art dance, sports. This program is done in 27 parks in high crime districts. There is a $15.00/day stipend for students who must attend. A liaison at the school understands that teen or what his/her individual needs are. Shoesmith is involved in this program.

Kenwood School has drop-in programs in Hipology, Yoga, Dance, and Book Club, with open enrollment which meet twice a week from 3:30-6:00 from February to May.

Programs include the following: 6 weeks and 8 weeks programs: True Star, King College Prep, journalism, crimebusters, nutrition and fitness, teen mentoring programs for younger kids.

In the Fall, Kenwood students trained in mentoring could link with Canter. Potentially, Canter students could link with younger kids. There are groups on a mailing lists who want to provide services, including community organizations, independent instructors, etc. who do workshops. The impetus for programs such as these come directly as a result of surveys of students who were asked what they wanted. After School Matters contacts the schools by letter.

Regional Directors of After School Matters work with LSC’s and PACS. No Child Left Behind does not impact After School Matters because NCLB refers to performance on ISBE scores.

t Kenwood, the SES AIM HIGH PROGRAM seeks teachers.

Since our group is ignorant of what is going on we must go to LSC meetings to find out what we have and what is needed. Parents need to know what opportunities exist. Teenagers need guidance, as they will not be pro-active. Our forum in March showed the number of programs that already exist, but since many are private they are costly. The After School Matters programs need to be allotted fairly across the board.

Someone mentioned a band of juvenile delinquents coming from an unknown school or neighborhood who commit assaults on people and property.

It was decided that two or three people should contact the Chicago Public Schools Office of After School Program, 773-553-3576 or 3590, Tawa Jogunonsimi, Community Schools Initiative Program Manager to talk to her about what is going on and inquire as to how schools whose test scores do not mandate intervention may apply.

The Committee discussed finding ways to allow each school to showcase what it does best: Kenwood: Music; Canter, Shoesmith: unknown.

Our next meeting will be on Tuesday, June 26th at 7 pm at United Church of Hyde Park.

Daisy Lezama, from Dept. of Child & Youth Services (312-743-0258) will be at our next meeting (or send someone). They have money and have few programs in Hyde Park, but would be glad to consider more with established nonprofits. They do have programs with Hyde Park Neighborhood Club, so these should be available to our students without cost.

Since someone mentioned that students at Kenwood complain that they have nothing to do after school and the administration tells them they have to leave, James Harris will attend the Kenwood Local School Council Meeting on June 5 to get a report for our next meeting and to invite people to come to our meetings. The PACS meeting for Kenwood is at 5:15.

Nancy B. Baum

Reports on meeting of June 26 2007 and what the committed is doing on afterschool programming

By Nancy Baum

In the July 11, 2007 Herald an article written by Nykeya Woods that appeared about the Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference Schools Committee’s June 26, 2007 meeting may not have completely reflected what our meeting was about.

The Schools Committee, whose mission is to have every school in the neighborhood be one that every parent would be proud to send their children to, has been working to increase community participation in our neighborhood schools. To date we have done the following:

1) Encouraged citizens to participate in Local School Council elections and facilitated training for new LSC members through appropriate agencies
2) Established liaisons between committee members and each of the Local School Councils and school principals
3) Acquainted local parents of ancillary programs available to school children in our area.

In an effort to create a data base of ancillary programs we conducted a public forum in March called “After School Matters in Hyde Park” at which interested community members heard about a wide variety of programs. This initiative came directly as a result of discussions with members of LSC’s concerned about programs for children on half-days and school holidays. We are working on both an internet list and a hard-copy list to be distributed this fall.

In addition, our committee has had considerable contact with Carolyn Epps, the principal of Canter School who, along with Canter’ LSC, has expressed a need for after-school activities that would engage these middle-schoolers in activities from the time school ends until 5:15 pm when their parents come to pick them up. In her article Nykeya Woods rightly pointed out programs currently available to schools throughout the city and funded through the City of Chicago’s Youth Services. Funds for such programs must be applied for one year in advance by organizations that wish to provide such activities. At our last meeting the Schools Committee suggested that Canter might like to try out a pilot program and the Schools Committee can work with Canter to try to find appropriate providers who would be willing to apply for funding. Activity providers can apply in Spring 2008 for 2009. This gives all concerned parties a lot of time to work out meaningful programs. The Schools Committee will contact activity providers and principals about their interest in attending a special block-grant workshop sponsored by the Schools Committee.

The next regular Schools Committee meeting will be on Monday, Sept. 17, 2007, at the United Church of Hyde Park. Interested individuals should contact Nancy Baum, 773-288-5464 for further information.

Nancy Baum, Chair
Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference Schools Committee

Nykeya Wood's original July 11, 2007 Herald article- Afterschool programs available for tween's

At the Hyde Park Community Conference Schools Committee meeting last month, the city's Department of Children and Youth Services discussed afterschool activities for neighborhood students.

The committee decided to put its effort into finding something for students from Canter Middle School, 4959 S. blackstone Ave. to do. Because of their age, children from the school are unlikely to receive jobs and as a result may be idle with no structured activities.

"We invited [Daisy Lezama from the Department of Children and Youth Services] here so that she could talk to us about our problem that we're having in Hyde Park," said the committee's Chairman Nancy Baum. Canter Local School Council member Zoe Mikva said six month ago, she began talking with Lezama about after school activities. Mikva said that the community is interested in finding outlets for students who roam around the neighborhood when school lets out. "We're trying to put together a database ... so that we know what all is out there and we can pass along all this information to the parents at the various grade levels," Mikva said.

Lezama said participants programs like those offered at the Blue Gargoyle could qualify for a $2,000 grant. This summer Blue Gargoyle is offering a summer enhancement program for children 10 to 12. Funds received wil go to prepare for music and costumes for a Chicago Revellers Caribbean Dance & Parade Summer.

She said that the agency also has a partnership with the Museum of Science and Industry through the Hyde Park Neighborhood Club. The after school science club is designed for student five to 12. Lezama said that the 120 students created a genetics experiment using their own saliva and the juice of a strawberry that was displayed at the museum in May. "It's something that we are going to open up again in the fall," Lezama said.

Students wil be selected through an application process. Other afterschool programs the city funds is Smart Art Summer DAy Camp at the National Heritage Foundation, 4701 S. Michigan Ave., Youth Organizing Project at he Kenwood Oakland Community Organization, 1005 E. 43rd St. and Giving Back- Careers in a Nonprofit Organization at Woodlawn Preservation and Investment Corporation, 822 E. 63rd st.