POUGHKEEPSIE – Lt. Gov. Antonio Delgado visited the Early Learning Center at Smith School, Poughkeepsie City School District’s pre-k and kindergarten school building, on November 28 to observe the implementation of Ampact’s tutoring programs in the Poughkeepsie City School District.
Poughkeepsie is the first school district in New York State to launch Ampact’s tutoring programs.
Ampact, a nonprofit organization started in the early 2000s, operates in 10 states in the United States, offering Math Corps, Reading Corps, and Early Learning Corps programs. In Poughkeepsie, students in pre-K through third grade are receiving services from the Early Learning and Math Corps. Ampact’s mission is to transform lives.
“The visit by the lieutenant governor of New York was tremendous and successful by recognizing the work being done here in the Poughkeepsie City School District,” said Gregory Mott, assistant superintendent for elementary education. “We’re hoping this will be the first of many visits and recognitions. It ultimately is about ensuring our students build their skills and as they progress through the grades, they’re progressing grade-level ready.”
Delgado was introduced to district board members and administrators as well as representatives from Ampact in the school library before observing a math tutoring session with two kindergarten students in the library and a pre-K classroom.
“To think that this is the first type of program of its kind in the state is incredibly encouraging because that means we have nowhere to go but up,” said Delgado in a debriefing session after observing the tutoring session and the pre-K classroom.
“The lieutenant governor understands the importance of high-dosage tutoring and programs that benefit our young children, especially in early learning and universal pre-K,” said Katrina Gobins, Ampact’s executive director for the New York programs. “I’m feeling optimistic that we can expand programming in the future.”
Nadine Elting-Dargan, principal of the Early Learning Center at Smith School, has seen growth in students. “Some of our children come here in kindergarten, and they have had no schooling at all,” she said. “Having the tutor has been a wonderful piece to accelerate their learning and bring them up to where some of the other children are, who have been in preschool from two years old.”
Elting-Dargan believes the program will benefit students throughout the state and encourages other districts to add the program. “Don’t think too much, just go for it,” she said. “It’s a program that benefits children and as educators, we are here for the benefit of children. There is never a second thought about giving a child something more.”
To learn more about the Ampact program or those interested in becoming an Ampact tutor should contact Fran Andrade, Ampact program manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 845.748.5103.