Spring-Summer 2005

Cleveland's TILI Learning Centers

In the last three years the Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) Technology and Information Literacy Initiative (TILI) Learning Centers have opened up in three inner-city Cleveland neighborhoods. The Tri-C TILI Centers are busy serving all ages from 10:00 am to 7:00 pm daily, with a focus on family literacy, GED, ABLE, K-12 tutoring, after-school programs, and basic computer classes.

TILI Learning Center
TILI Learning Center

The TILI Learning Centers are a collaboration between Cuyahoga Community College, Cleveland Municipal School District, and private multi-family property owners. Each Center serves a different neighborhood and has its own personality. The Rainbow Terrace Center opened first in late 2002 and is the largest of the three. The Arbor Park Learning Center , located a few blocks from the Tri-C Metro Campus, is filled to capacity almost everyday of the week with K-12 th graders. And the newest addition, Park Village , opened in October of 2004 and serves the Hough neighborhood.

The heart of all the Learning Centers is the K-12 program. At three o'clock every afternoon students burst through the doors with homework and stories from school. Students get help with homework, assistance with special projects, and open-access computer time. The curriculum focuses on reading, writing, math, and information literacy. Learning Center staff collaborate with the teachers and parents on a regular basis to ensure students are focusing on the appropriate subjects and skills.

Family literacy and parent involvement are important aspects of the TILI program. Many parents have taken the opportunity to use open access times and to take free basic computer skills, GED and ABE classes. The GED classes have had a great success rate with Victoria Natsis as the lead teacher, and many adult students continue their education and enter programs at Tri-C after completing their degree. The Learning Center at Rainbow Terrace offers math tutoring for adults needing assistance with assessment tests or college classes.

Outside the regular academic school year, the Smarter Summer program focuses on preventing academic slippage and creating an environment where K-12 students organize their own projects. In 2004, the Rainbow Terrace Smarter Summer program operated a snack business, and with the profits they took a trip to the Six Flags Amusement Park . The Arbor Park Smarter Summer program is planning a play that they will put on for the other Learning Centers during the 2005 summer program.

Kris Carroll is the Cuyahoga Community College TILI Learning Centers Coordinator. She has a B.A. from John Carroll University and a MLIS from Kent State University.


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