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Every child would benefit from out of school program

D. HaynesFamily & Children’s Place board member Doug Haynes recently visited Meyzeek Middle School for a visit with the agency’s Collaborative Learning After School Program (CLASP), managed by the Family & School Services team.

“I was so impressed and so moved,” said Haynes, a family law attorney who also holds a master’s in social work. “The kids there had so much energy and enthusiasm, and the staff was amazing, working with the students to help them advance in their grades, social skills and life. I walked away with so much emotion.

“I want every child, every student, even those not in our program, to have the experience those student are having. All would benefit.”

At Meyzeek, 97 percent of enrolled students qualify for free or reduced lunches and 46 percent of families live at or below the poverty level. Additionally, the neighborhoods, which include Smoketown and Shelby Park, have higher crime, unemployment and high school dropout rates than the rest of Jefferson County.

Haynes also shared that he was so grateful there are people who can do work such as this day to day. “I couldn’t do it,” he said,” so I am thankful there are those who can, and that they work for us.”

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