Ames, PrimeCare and LSNA awarded $3.5 million to improve students’ health and education and promote community schools model

Ames Middle School, PrimeCare Community Health and the Logan Square Neighborhood Association received a grant of $3.5 million dollars over 3 ½ years to transform the middle school experience for Ames students and their families by providing a full service health center in the school, complete mental health services, and many other activities. Intensive mentoring opportunities, expanded physical fitness activities like dance, organized sports and bicycling, and enhanced academic enrichment opportunities like book clubs, study skills workshops and Facing History and Ourselves are a few of the offerings the school will provide after school and some Saturdays, in addition to an expanded summer enrichment camp during July and August.

LSNA and Ames were strong candidates for the funding because of our long and successful history of providing integrated services at school community learning centers. In addition to Ames, LSNA partners with Funston, McAuliffe, Monroe, and Mozart to offer a variety of services and opportunities for families. Parents are offered E.S.L., adult literacy and G.E.D. classes, and also lead some of the programs offered to students. Students can participate in after or before school programs that include sports, arts, nutrition and tutoring. As a part of LSNA’s holistic plan, Community Learning Centers have long provided space for both adults and children to unite with CPS teachers, principals, and other community members.

LSNA, Ames and PrimeCare join four other school-community partnerships in this endeavor:  Southwest Organizing Project and Marquette Elementary; Quad Communities Development Corporation and Reavis Elementary; Auburn Gresham Development Corporation and Perspectives Charter School and The Resurrection Project and Orozco Academy. All five partnerships are part of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation’s New Communities Program, which brought the international foundation, The Atlantic Philanthropies, to Chicago to fund this four-year, $18 million demonstration project. The Ames health center, which will be operated by PrimeCare Community Health with Advocate Illinois Masonic Behavioral Health as its mental health partner, is scheduled to open in September. For more information please contact Adriana Portillo-Bartow at LSNA at ext. 37.