Meet the Writers

Open House

September 10 and 17, 5–7PM
South Towne Mall -- 2411 W. Broadway – (608) 223-0489

See What Academic Achievement Looks Like!

  • Bridging gaps requires local kids – meet them, talk to them, see their newsroom
  • In 2015, SSFP curriculum won several prestigious national awards
  • SSFP curriculum is featured in 2015 national issue brief on building youth literacy [Read Here]
  • La Prensa employs 68 young writers who publish in English and Spanish
  • Grads of James Wright Free Press (located at Capital Newspapers) join the South Towne staff
  • All SSFP students write book reviews and publish content on multiple media platforms
  • Students publish at least one science assignment per semester (including summer)
  • Students publish at least one history assignment per semester (including summer)
  • Students complete at least one arts feature per semester (including summer)
  • Students practice literacy and learn 21st century job skills in authentic newsrooms
  • SSFP South Towne is Dane County’s first all-academics youth center

National research is clear: after-school academics and project-based learning gets results. See for yourself. Visit these young reporters. Let them show you their work. See our 2014-15 data. Most of all -- see and experience what an all-academics youth center looks like.

Remember, Never Hand in Your First Draft!

Did you Know?

"Both learners and teachers need more time - not to do more of the same, but to use all time in new, different, and better ways" (Prisoners of Time).

"Content matters. School-community partnerships matter. It’s not just extending time, but providing quality, engaging, enriching learning opportunities during that time" (Afterschool Alliance).

“The size of children’s vocabularies, reading comprehension, and verbal skills are directly related to the quantity of text they read. Because children are typically given little time for reading in school, reading during out-of-school time is the primary way to increase the amount of reading children do, hence building their reading competence” (Cunningham and Stanovich).

“Reading aloud to students and using questions to activate prior knowledge are effective techniques for positively affecting students’ attitudes toward reading. Comprehension increases when students have conversations about a text with peers and teachers” (Pressley).

"The achievement gap in the United States is a well-documented issue that pervades every aspect of society, and one of its essential cogs is the disconnect in reading and writing achievement between low-income children and those from more affluent backgrounds. By comparison, children from low-income families start off at an immense disadvantage in terms of literacy development" (Literacy by the Numbers: Afterschool Alliance Issue Brief #53).

“Middle school stands as a particularly important time to intervene and ensure that children are on the right track toward proficient literacy. Although reading and writing abilities are first developed in elementary school, sixth graders who failed math or English/reading have only a 10 to 20 percent chance of graduating high school on time. Therefore, intervention during the middle school years is critical, and children who have fallen behind in elementary school need more help to catch up” (MetLife Foundation)

"A child’s reading comprehension in first grade can be predicted almost exclusively by decoding ability. But by second grade deficiencies in vocabulary, background knowledge, and critical thinking are the principal limiting factors of a child’s reading comprehension abilities. This effect increases with each grade" (Juel).

“SSFP is pioneering new and innovative ways to apply integrated curriculum strategies in after-school settings” (The President’s Committee for the Arts and Humanities).

“Writing and literacy are areas where out-of-school programs can have the most impact” (The National Partnership for Quality After-school Learning). -- (608) 223-0489