Last month, The Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History launched the Museum Academy. It’s specifically designed to help kids who are taking part in distance learning while their parents work.
The Museum Academy program helps kids in Kindergarten through sixth grade. The students are divided into rooms according to their grade level. The museum’s education director, Scott Simmonds said the facility is big enough to help up to 100 kids.
“To come here and then participate in their online sessions with their teachers and we can just assist and be a support mechanism for that,” said Simmonds.
So far, 45 students are enrolled in the program. Parents begin dropping off their kids around 7:30 am. Classes begin at 8 am and end at 4 pm. Kids are required to wear their masks, social distance, and undergo temperature checks when they arrive.
“They go through the necessary questionnaire as far as you know how is everybody in the family feeling and then you know if everything checks out ok then we escort the children in and they get to work,” said Simmonds.
The Museum also incorporates fun science experiments into the students’ schedules. "We do a science show for them, so there's a lot of fun activities that they get to do that are more museum-isk and related to science and history,” said Simmonds.
“They have even a playground that is very big,” said Noah Garcia who is a student within the program.
"It's really really fun, like they help you with all your schoolwork, and then after you are done you do like recess and there's like a whole bunch of stuff you can do,” said Sebastian Garcia who is also a student in the program.
One parent, Mary Robles said her kids love the museum’s academy program. "They get off at 4 and they don't want me to pick them up before 4 they love it here and they are very helpful,” said Robles.
Scott said during these times, families are hurting and that they are here to help and support in any way that they can.
"These kids are safe here. We have gone above and beyond to make sure that they are provided for and that we are providing a need to their families,” said Simmonds.
Members of the museum pay $180 per child per week and non-members are charged $200 per child per week... But the city of Corpus Christi has given the Museum a grant that provides scholarships for families who can't afford the program.