The West Side Senior Sports Leadership Academy (SLA) provides multiple extracurricular activities plus college and career advising services for students of Edward A. Reynolds West Side High School, a public alternative high school in New York City that serves “over-age, under-credited” young adults age 16 to 21. Programming promotes leadership, community responsibility, and a “go forward” mentality that propels young people toward successful futures in college, careers, and community leadership.
The SLA curriculum includes service learning, community activities, field trips, guest speakers, and college campus visits, as well as opportunities for participants to perform, compete, and showcase their achievements. Other activities and services that have been offered include: 1-to-1 Mentoring, Tutoring, Rugby, Yoga, Dance, Event Planning, Music Studio, Weightlifting, Songwriting, Photography, Walk for Fitness, Tennis. SLA activities are offered in complement to the E.A.R. West Side High School extended day.
During the 2012-13 school year:
- The men’s and women’s rugby teams played 21 matches against club and college teams
- The SLA dance team performed 6 times on and off campus
- Students took part in New York City breast cancer and AIDS charity walks
- Students also made 7 visits combined to our Junior SLA sites to share and teach rugby and dance with elementary school children. West Side SLA participants also make up a number of our volunteers at Play Rugby USA flag rugby tournaments
The SLA program was an important factor in the school being honored as a recipient of an Alliance for a Healthy Generation bronze medal in 2012 and silver medal in 2013. West Side SLA recently completed its third year as a 21st Century Community Learning Center, funded by a New York State after school grant initiative . In 2014, with the grant expired, the West Side SLA forges onward with new funding sources.