Children observe a nature show at a Family Academy in 2009, Side by Side's first program year.

Children observe a nature show at a Family Academy.

2004: Laurel Clergy Association pairs churches with schools to provide support

2007: Side by Side incorporates with state of Maryland to expand faith-community outreach to Laurel schools

2008: Side by Side core team begins planning meetings, develops partnership with Prince George’s County Public Schools

2009: Bylaws adopted, board of directors formed, officers elected

501(c)(3) status granted by IRS

Part-time executive director hired

Family Academy, the first parent academy program in Prince George’s County, begins. The monthly event offers workshops for parents from seven elementary schools in English and Spanish, and also a free dinner and children’s activities. Average attendance is 84

2010: First annual breakfast fundraiser held, raising $15,000

“Almost Home,” a homework club, begins three afternoons a week at an apartment complex

Side by Side’s second, part-time employee hired.

Spanish-language translation and interpretation services for schools begin

2011: Pilot series of three workshops for kindergarten and pre-kindergarten parents (precursor of Great Start) launched at four schools. First annual “Kicks for a Cause” kickball tournament held

2012: Great Start for kindergarten and pre-kindergarten families held at six schools, with six sessions each. Four hundred nineteen parents and children attend

2013: First Side by Side Ride held

Last Family Academy held, to be replaced by Great Start

Great Start expands to eight sessions for kindergarten and pre-kindergarten families, three sessions for first- and second-grade families.

2015: Great Start adds summer program

2016: Great Start incorporates two Family Fun Nights, one with reading games and one with math games, into our fall programming at each of our schools

2017: Great Start expands to another school, Calverton Elementary.

To view media coverage of Side by Side’s growth and change, click here.

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