Churches, businesses offer after-school options

Published 8:12 am Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Parents who have depended upon after-school programs for child care in the past, have several local options for scheduling afternoon care.

At the close of the 2012-2013 school year, parents of students enrolled in the Andalusia program were notified that the 2012-13 school year would be the last for program. The ACS letter cited declining enrollment, which is also the main reason given by Opp City Schools for ending its afternoon program.

In Andalusia, a number of church- and privately-run childcare facilities have services available.

Nancy Philyaw, coordinator of Southside Baptist Church’s program, said the church will pick up students at both Andalusia Elementary School and Andalusia Middle Schol. The program provides snacks and homework assistance, a Bible time, and a choice of fun activity once homework is done.

The program is open to students in K-8, and is $40 per week. There is a discount for multiple children.

At Dimples Day Care, Christy Copeland said she is pleased that Debra Windham, who worked with the after school program at AES for 14 years, will handle after-school activities for children.

Copeland said Dimples also will take advantage of a new service provided by the Andalusia City School system, and a representative of Dimples will ride the bus with students to the day care facility each afternoon.

In the past, ACS policy did not allow bus drivers to deliver students to businesses. But Brooke Blair told board members last week that the policy is changing for businesses that provide a bus chaperone for students.

“They’ll drop the kids off here,” Copeland said, adding that the business will provide a snack and homework assistance. The program is $40 per week, and hours are available until 6 p.m. for students in the after school program.

Copeland said she could take 35 to 40 students, and that she accepts DHR payments.

Melissa Alday said Guardian Angel also has openings, and will pick up children from Andalusia Elementary, and they will participate in different games and activities, have a Bible story, and homework time. The program is open until 5:30 p.m.

A number of the day care’s 30 to 40 after-school slots are already taken.

Doris Gibson, owner of Granny D’s, offers before after-school care for students in second through eighth grades, just as she has for the past 10 years.

She picks up students at school, and encourages them to do as much homework as possible before their parents pick them up. She also works with students to complete reading assignments in the AR program, and drops students off at the dentist office or ballet lessons if needed.

At snack time, she serves chicken nuggets, homemade mashed potatoes and green beans.

The cost of the after school program starts at $40, and she offers discounts for multiple children.

Local in-home day care providers who provide services for students up to age 12 include Rose Phillips, Mary Richards, Shirley Trawick and Florence Gibson. None of them provide transportation.