WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) - For more than 300 young students in Luzerne County, learning doesn’t stop when the school bell rings. It only grows during the county's Shine after school program. It has a project based curriculum that leaders say is different from what some K-8 students learn in their classrooms.
Congressman Lou Barletta said, "There's no books to begin with. It's stem education plus the arts. When you see them work in teams, its teaching them how to work in groups."
Barletta and State Senator John Yudichak were instrumental in starting the program in Luzerne County with federal, state and local funding.
They say in just one year since they started the pilot program in conjunction with Wilkes University, they are already seeing a positive impact.
"Many [of the students] who weren't participating in class, we're seeing participation going up. Attendance is going up," said Barletta.
Currently there are Shine programs in four area school districts, but on this first anniversary, educators are expanding.
"In the first month of January, Hanover Area will come on line as an elementary center, being our 5th center," said Senator Yudichak.
The Luzerne County SHINE Program sponsored by Wilkes University will hold a one-year anniversary celebration on Tuesday, December 20 at 4:30 p.m. at the West Side Career and Technical Center.