While most students would look forward to relaxing at home after an eight-hour school day, 101 students from the Brighter Choice Charter Schools attend a bi-weekly after-school academy that promotes the sciences at the Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.
The students begin attending the ACPHS Academy in the third grade when teachers and administrators select ten boys and ten girls to participate in the program, which has now been around for about seven years. Currently, students in third through eigth grades attend the academy, which has added a grade each year. Next year, there will be a ninth grade program and, eventually, the plan is to go through twelfth grade, said Rebecca Beach, director of the ACPHS Academy.
The after-school program, which runs 1 1/2 hours, focuses on helping at-risk youths. The students who start in third grade are not only chosen for their academic promise and good behavior, but are also required to be enrolled in a free or reduced lunch program, she explained.