Y Reads With You, Literacy Program
Y Reads with You began in the fall of 2010 through an opportunity presented by United Way of Mid and South Jefferson County. United Way requested a proposal for funding to start a literacy program in the Jefferson County area to help school districts who would benefit from additional academic resources and assist with reducing the drop-out rate in the state of Texas.
The YMCA was notified in late September that we were the recipients of a $50,000 grant to start a literacy program in the area. This would become one of the YMCA’s of Southeast Texas first signature educational program in the Jefferson County area. The literacy program was officially titled Y READS with YOU by its former director Leah Sam. The name was chosen to show a continued connection between the Y and the community we serve every day. Y Reads with You started at Sam Houston Elementary in the fall of 2010 shortly after receiving the funds from United Way. Sam Houston was the first school chosen by the current Superintendent of Port Arthur Independent School District, Dr. Mark Porterie.
The literacy program has been in operation since 2010-2011 school year through the continued support of United Way and other grant supporters and contributors such as Foundation of Southeast Texas, Flint Hills, Dollar General, Capital One, North Port Arthur Rotary Club, Port Arthur Rotary and Education Foundation. We are currently serving Port Arthur Independent School District, Participating elementary schools are Sam Houston, Lucian Adams, Dick Dowling, and our newest addition which was added January 2015 Booker T. Washington Elementary School. When we first started the program we only served students in grades 3rd thru 5th grade, now we are serving students from 1st grade to 5th grade.
The goal of Y Reads is to encourage educational growth and excellence among the children in our community. The objectives of Y Reads include improvement in reading, reading fluency, comprehension, building self-confidence, self-esteem and the importance of knowing how to read.
For the last 3 years, we have added a reading software program called Achieve 3000. This program has assisted us with our parent involvement and allows our students to continue practicing at home. The program helps us track our student progress and helps us identify what areas we need to focus on with individual students.
The Y Reads with You program does more than just teach children to read. We give them a safe place to be after school while parents work. We work on self-esteem, self-confidence, and promote a successful education among our children. Most of the children in our program or at risk students in their schools. They struggle with social skills, behavior, and enrichment. Y Reads has helped these students improve in all these areas since the start of our program. We look forward to our continued growth, community support, and success with YMCA’s Y Reads with YOU program.
The Y thanks the following grantors providing support to Y Reads With You:
Flint Hills Resources – Port Arthur
The United Way of Mid and South Jefferson County
The United Way of Orange County
Wilton & Effie Mae Hebert Foundation
10am – 1 pm
Location: Port Arthur YMCA Social Hall
Boys and girls will learn basic CPR and first Aid from the skilled staff of Acadian Ambulance Service.
Port Arthur Police will teach a segment on home safety and texting and driving.
Classes are held in the Spring & Fall