FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nov. 21, 2008
Contact: Anika Mitchell Perkins
Crossroads program awarded nearly $170,000
COLUMBUS, Miss. – The Crossroads program led by the Center for Creative Learning at Mississippi University for Women was recently awarded almost $170,000 to continue serving youth in Lowndes County.
The effort is being made possible through the Mississippi Department of Education Office of Innovation and School Improvement as part of the 21st Century Community Learning Centers program.
Since its inception two years ago, Crossroads has provided services for approximately 450 middle and high school students from the Columbus Municipal School District.
Ivey Ivy, Crossroads project director, said 133 seventh through tenth grade students are participating in this year’s program at the school sites. The number of students being served each year has increased even while the budget has decreased.
She added that each week the students take classes in reading, math, and art at Lee Middle School and Columbus High School as part of the afterschool portion of the program. The Columbus Arts Council provides local artists at the school sites to lead the art instruction every week. Students from the Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science provide one-on-one tutoring in mathematics, while MUW students gain valuable field experience working with the Crossroads students in content area reading. Crossroads participants use the MUW Stark Recreation Center on Saturdays as part of the fitness and recreation component of the project.
“Students in the Crossroads program have opportunities for enrichment that they would not otherwise have. Word has gotten out among students and what we had hoped would happen has happened. Kids want to be in Crossroads,” said Ivy.
MUW serves as the lead institution for the Crossroads program. Other community partners include the Columbus Municipal School District, Columbus Arts Council, Lowndes County Youth Court and Community Counseling Services.