Lawrence Boys and Girls Club


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Club kids Leah D. and JJ C. selected to attend GovsPLUS

August 17, 2017

Club kids Leah D. and JJ C. were among 40 rising 8th and 9th graders from Lawrence who were recently selected to attend The Governors Academy's GovsPLUS (Powerful Learners Unlocking Success) program to strengthen their academic skills, build self-confidence, and participate in formative service and experiential learning opportunities.

The five-week, tuition-free academic enrichment program partners The Governor's Academy with motivated middle school students to help them reach their potential in and outside of the classroom.

Following a healthy breakfast, GovsPLUS scholars attended morning classes with small-group instruction designed to develop math, reading, writing, and critical thinking skills. After lunch, they participated in community-building events, small-group mentoring, and enrichment activities such as recreational sports, visual and performing arts, science and technology, and community service initiatives with a focus on social justice.

In the third academic period, scholars alternated between workshops that developed research, writing, and public speaking skills. Weekly field trips included the Museum of Science, Museum of Fine Arts, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, the Freedom Trail, a robotics program at MIT, kayaking and canoeing, visits to independent high school and college campuses, and other fun destinations.

Leah, a rising 8th grader at Lawrence Catholic Academy, says the program was "like school, but even better."

"The classes were fun, but also challenging, so we'll really have a head start when we get to the 8th grade," she adds. "The SAT prep class was also a very good thing for me. Every time I thought about it in the past, I'd get scared, but now I know [the test] will be fine."

JJ, a rising 8th grader at Community Day Charter Public School, says students and teachers alike "felt like family" by the end of the program. In fact, GovsPLUS students continue their relationship with the academy throughout the academic year through workshops designed to help them develop organizational skills and manage the high school application process. Scholars also benefit from support from experienced faculty advisers and mentors, while connecting with fellow students through enrichment activities and field trips.

"It felt special to be chosen," JJ says, "and I was grateful to be part of it."


Did You Know?

The Lawrence Housing Authority credits the programs of the Boys & Girls Club of Lawrence for significantly reducing juvenile deliquency in public housing.