|Updated: 1/14 9:34 am
||Published: 1/13 5:08 pm
LITTLE ROCK, AR - Sunday, children from Pulaski County graduated from Kiwanis Camp. They spent the past five weeks at camp, instead of their schools, to learn outside of the traditional classroom.
The thirty children are from the Little Rock and the Pulaski County Special School Districts, and they each earned a certificate of achievement when they graduated from the Alternative Classroom Experience at the Joseph Pfeifer Kiwanis Camp.
"It gets harder and harder for them to want to leave camp. Some of them want to hide in their luggage," says Program Director Adrienne Hagen.
The five week program allows children to get out of the traditional classroom and work on their academic performance, behavior and self-esteem.
Donna Hill can already see positive changes in her daughter.
"She is more outgoing. She's well-spoken, and she doesn't have any problems communicating with her family and friends," says Hill.
"If you want to do well in school, just like you've learned in these past few weeks, you have to be dedicated," said Senator Mark Pryor at the event.
As the graduation speaker, Senator Mark Pryor says when he heads back to Washington, there will be budget cuts,- but he will focus on tax and entitlement reform and saving programs like this one.
"We know it's going to be hard and difficult and painful. We want to make sure that for the programs that do work, we need to try to preserve those, and we need to find the ones that don't work and where there's duplication, you know, we need to find our savings there," says Pryor.
Hill hopes the camp sticks around so more children can benefit from it like her daughter.
"I want her to continue to do well and just respect her teachers and respect her peers and we'll be good," says Hill.
If you are interested in enrolling your child in the Alternative Classroom Experience you can talk to your child's counselor.