July 15, 2008


This summer nearly 300 Denver Public Schools (DPS) students, mainly from low-income or homeless families, are participating in a six-week summer enrichment program called Denver-CAMP. This camp is a collaborative effort between DPS and 22 local nonprofit agencies, and students participate free of charge.

DPS and the Denver Quality After-School Connection (DQUAC), a coalition of organizations working together to increase the quality of out-of-school programs in Denver, have combined their resources to host this camp for the second year. This year, the program expanded to two sites, and the Rachel B. Noel Middle site is where SCORES is hosting both soccer and arts/enrichment activities.

This is the last week of CAMP, and all reports have been positive. Our soccer coaches report that it is quite different to work with kids in the summer heat we have been experiencing, but that their co-ed group of twenty students has been doing great with scrimmaging and skill-building. Among other projects our arts/enrichment teachers created a fireworks-themed visual art project the week of the fourth of July. This week the students in the soccer sessions will go home with their very own soccer balls, and students in our arts sessions will be able to take home all the various projects they have created.

July 10, 2008

Cholesterol-Lowering Drugs for Kids

This has been all over the news this week, this article from, "The Oregonian," gives a clear summation:

"The nation's pediatricians are calling for wider use of cholesterol-lowering drugs in children -- the latest troubling sign of the obesity epidemic. Guidelines published this week by the American Academy of Pediatrics advocate the use of statins and other cholesterol-lowering drugs in kids as young as 8. ...Since 1998, when the previous guidelines were published, the number of overweight and obese children has soared. ...[S]tudies have revealed that atherosclerosis, the clogging and hardening of arteries, can start during grade-school years in those with high cholesterol.

"The more evidence we accumulate, the more it's clear the process does begin in childhood," said Dr. Stephen Daniels of the University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine, lead author of the guidelines. [T]he guidelines call for the use [of these drugs] only in kids with severe high cholesterol who make no progress with diet and exercise."


July 3, 2008

Munroe Elementary's Watermelon Poem

This poem, written collaboratively by our teams at Munroe Elementary (see picture), seems particularly perfect for a hot Fourth of July weekend!


Green outsides pink inside
With black dots reddish pinkish
big like an oval slippery, juicy
like a giant green sometimes
it has white lines around it
squishy if it’s hard it’s good
tastes like juice tastes like candy
tastes fresh drips down your chin
the water runs down your clothes

Children In Poverty: The Colorado Paradox

The following summary about the state of child poverty in Colorado appeared in the NY Times last month.

"Colorado...experienced the nation's largest jump in the rate of children in poverty -- 73 percent -- from 2000 and 2006. The study cited a rise in the number of single-parent households, a shortage of jobs for lower wage workers in Colorado and a low high school graduation rate as factors."

In other reports, I have heard of single-moms living on seven-thousand dollars per year in our state. In families living at or below the poverty level there is no way to pay for things like after school programming. And children living in neighborhoods that a family with 7K per year can afford, are those who most need a safe place to be until their families get home from work.

This is why our program exists, and with the continued rise of child poverty in our state, why we must continue to exist. This is why we charge students a minimal fee to participate, and why we scholarship any child that cannot afford the $15 fee.

Children in our program are safe, and well-fed after school. The activities they participate in, created to inspire youth to lead healthy lifestyles, be engaged students, and become agents of change in their communities, are steps toward reversing this negative trend.