Always part of the plan, an expansion of Burnsville Youth Collaborative programming to all three Burnsville-Eagan-Savage School District 191 middle schools has happened a little ahead of schedule.
A partnership involving District 191, the City of Burnsville, Twins Cities Catalyst Music and the Minnesota Valley YMCA, the Burnsville Youth Collaborative (BYC) provides safe, fun after-school activities for middle school students, as well as tutoring and other academic help for students. Programming started with the 2014-15 school year at Nicollet Middle School only.
“At the end of last year, we were averaging over 90 students per day and had simply outgrown the space,” said BYC coordinator Christian Kibler.
Now, instead of students from Eagle Ridge and Metcalf middle schools traveling to Nicollet to join the program, they can stay at their home schools to take part in programming that includes academic support, arts, community service, music and recording lessons, athletics and more.
“We have had tremendous support from middle school staff and we have a great team of staff members who have created a program that students love to attend,” Kibler said, “and those students are growing academically, socially and emotionally because of this program.”
The BYC has served more than 375 middle school students this year, thanks in part to partnerships with District 191 Community Education, the YMCA, Twin Cities Catalyst Music, the University of Minnesota Extension Service and Wilderness Inquiry. Kibler says the BYC intends to keep growing and serving more Burnsville youths.
“The BYC is an important part of this community because it gives our students a safe place to grow, learn and have fun,” he said.