After School Programs in San Antonio
While there are still homes where a child can be with a parent after school, the reality for many, if not most, children is that both parents work. The hours between three and five have been called the “witching hour” because crime and injuries increase between these hours. The need for good, after school programs is paramount. Given the right program, children are safer, happier, and engaged in additional learning. As Richard Riley said, “a child’s mind doesn’t shut down after 3p.m.”
There are several things to look for when selecting after school programs in San Antonio. The first is safety. Is the facility clean? Are there enough people there to look after the children? Do they seem to care about the children and monitor them? Does the program have a system in place to ensure that children are released only to the people authorized by the parent? If the answer to these questions are yes, then that is a good start.
The next thing to look for is academics. One of the best things about an after school program is homework help. Parents are helped enormously if the homework is done by the time they come and pick up their child. Children are helped when there is someone who can answer their questions when they are doing their homework. A good after school program, in San Antonio or anywhere else, will have a schedule in place where kids can get their homework done.
Once the safety and academic issues have been addressed, parents can look for other bonuses for their children. Are their activities that are age appropriate to keep their kids involved. Specifically, will children have an opportunity to do arts and crafts? Will they be able to engage in active play? The last thing a parent wants is for their child to be warehoused somewhere bored. An after school program should be fun. It should be a place where the child wants to go.
The hours after school can be quite dangerous. Baltimore, Maryland, found that when children had access to a good after school program, crime against them went down 47%. San Antonio could see similar benefits. Children in good after school programs are safer and happier than those who are left to their own devices after school.
Visiting the program in person is the the best way to evaluate a program. The staff should be welcoming and happy to show the prospective family all that they have to offer. After visiting several, it will be much easier to decide on a program in San Antonio.
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