Martinsville Boys and Girls Club seeking teachers to expand learning centers

Published: Nov. 20, 2020 at 6:18 AM EST
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MARTINSVILLE, Va. (WDBJ) - As the virtual school year got started in Martinsville and Henry County, the Boys and Girls Club of the Blue Ridge opened full-time learning centers for school-aged children.

“I think our program staff is very helpful because we are used to mentoring and supporting the kids and their needs, as well as being a support for the families and the schools,” said Joanie Petty, executive director of the Boys and Girls Club of the Blue Ridge.

Petty says virtual learning has been challenging for some students when they arrive, leading to failing grades; however, that changes once they start working with teachers and staff.

“Most of the time they can pull their grades up pretty quickly. A lot of the teachers are giving multiple turns for students to turn in assignments so they can improve their grades,” said Petty.

For Magna Vista junior Tania Starkie, staying motivated was the highest hurdle.

“When I was doing it virtual, I saw it in my eyes that I didn’t have to do it,” said Starkie.

Getting the much-needed help is why students have worked together to keep COVID-19 out.

“We always make sure that we are social distancing, have on our mask and just be very courteous of keeping each other safe,” said Laurel Park Middle School eighth grader, Christian Holland.

So that the center can not just stay open, but expand.

Since Henry County reverted to virtual learning, the waiting list has increased.

The Boys and Girls Club of the Blue Ridge is hiring more teachers to expand capacity.

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