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UC Blue Ash Students Teach and Learn at Cool School

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May 26, 2015 – Students at Loveland Elementary School are getting the chance to spend time with tutors, learn life lessons and have some fun along the way.  It’s all part of Cool School and it’s possible because of the efforts of the Loveland Initiative and students from UC Blue Ash College.

The Loveland Elementary Cool School Enrichment Program is an after-school support program designed for at-risk kids in 1st – 4th grades who need individual tutoring, have behavior challenges, or who just benefit from extra help with reading, writing and math. They meet for a little over an hour every Tuesday and Thursday afternoon. Their project leader is Tara Dupps, an early childhood education student at UC Blue Ash College who is from Loveland. Other volunteers from the Association for Student Educators (ASE) at UC Blue Ash also help on a regular basis.

“I was so excited when Tara and her group came to me about volunteering for this program. They have done an excellent job of working with our students, everything is very organized and they interact really well with the kids,” said Terri Rogers, executive director of the Loveland Initiative and director of the Cool School program. The organization was founded in 1996 to address the needs of underserved families in the Loveland community.

Along with Dupps, a handful of students from UC Blue Ash take part and make sure that at least two or three tutors are always there to work with the 15 – 20 children who attend Cool School.  The focus is on helping them learn, complete their homework, and build life skills that include helping others and being respectful of their friends, parents and teachers.

Gunner Bodily is a 2nd grader who participates in the program.  He likes recess and the games they play the best.  He answers quickly when asked what he has learned in Cool School. “How to be kind to others and how it’s important to read a lot. Reading is a good habit.”

Tara Dupps says the experience with Cool School has been more challenging and rewarding than she ever imagined.  She has always wanted to teach, but the program has motivated her to spend more time focusing on at-risk students.  “I originally wanted to teach at an elementary school in a nice school district, but being involved with this program has motivated me to do more to help challenged students, the ones who need us most,” said Dupps.

The group of student educators from UC Blue Ash was recognized this year by the Loveland Initiative with a Martin Luther King, Jr. Service Award for their support of the Cool School Program.

You can learn more about the Loveland Initiative at www.lovelandinitiative.com and you and find more information about the education programs at UC Blue Ash College at www.ucblueash.edu/education.

About UC Blue Ash College

UC Blue Ash College is a regional college within the University of Cincinnati. It offers one of the best values in higher education with access to a nationally recognized UC education in nearly 50 degrees and certificates, as well as tuition that is about half of most colleges and universities. The college is located on a scenic 135-acre wooded campus in the heart of Blue Ash, Ohio.