The ASPIRE after-school program, located in Norwalk's old Benjamin Franklin School building, works with local middle and high school youth to motivate and educate students through academic engagement, parent education and social and business exposure. It is a multi-faceted, longitudinal program that promotes academic success and positive youth development.
The ASPIRE middle school component’s mission is to improve the lives of Norwalk’s middle school youth by enabling their successful transition into high school and increasing their ability to be productive, independent young adults. The program meets five days a week during the school year from 3:00-5:30pm at Ben Franklin School and is open to Norwalk middle school students who meet the program criteria. In addition to academic support, the program offers enrichment activities, helps promote character development, and reinforces executive functioning skills.
The ASPIRE high school component’s mission is to provide a continuum of services to Norwalk’s high school youth which focus on academic success, building developmental assets and strengthening supports, which will empower youth to graduate high school and be enrolled in post-secondary education or vocational training. The program runs 12 months a year and is open to those children who completed our middle school component. In addition to tutoring and academic support, the high school component includes parent engagement, case management, gender-based programming, life skills, and college preparation.
ASPIRE’s summer enrichment component provides structured, goal-directed programming that reduces summer learning loss. The program offers cross-curriculum, theme-based learning that includes academics, cultural immersion, recreation and social, and emotional skill building.