- 2011 Round Barn Road Champaign, IL 61821
Tap In Leadership Academy (Tap In) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit academic enrichment organization. Tap In was founded in February 2010 by Chief Executive Officer, Sally K. Carter, as a relationship-centered, intentional learning community. Tap In offers Afterschool Enrichment Programs (AEP), Summer Enrichment Programs (SEP), Family Enrichment Programs (FEP), a Kickback Lounge (KBL), Tap In Prep Academy (TIPA), and a Youth Employment Service (YES!) throughout Central Illinois and Chicago.
The mission of Tap In Leadership Academy is to enhance educational achievement, support leadership development, and captivate cultural awareness so that all of our Scholars are college and career ready. The Tap In Way® affirms the existing knowledge, skills, and potential of Scholars and creates equitable opportunities for intellectual, social, and emotional growth. The vision of Tap In Leadership Academy is to educate, equip and empower Scholars to become the next generation of leaders.
Afterschool Enrichment Program (AEP)
Our Afterschool Enrichment Program serves Scholars at several locations throughout East Central Illinois. Our AEP features an academic hour with trained Team Members and dedicated volunteers from the University of Illinois, Eastern Illinois University, and Parkland College to assist with homework help and test preparation, and to equip Scholars with an abundance of study tips. Scholars then transition into a variety of enrichment activities based on their interests to fuel educational achievement, leadership development, and cultural advancement. The curriculum is derived from Tap In’s Culturally-Integrated Literacy Curriculum (CILC), 4-H curriculum, and innovative S.T.E.A.M. resources. Some examples include 4-H Clubs, Lego robotics, dance, cooking, intramural sports teams, African drumming, web design, and digital photography! Learn more about our Afterschool Enrichment Program.
We also value online learning. It helps prepare students for university entrance. For example, you can take a medicine interview course to prepare for admission to a medical university. This is really very helpful. Especially during a pandemic.
Our Summer Enrichment Program is fundamentally based on intentional learning. Our Scholars embark on a multicultural journey focusing on a different region of the world each week. Creative, S.T.E.A.M.-based enrichment activities are designed to complement current skills and to cultivate new ones. Scholars develop new friendships; advance academic and literary achievement; release some energy outdoors; create service learning projects; and incorporate leadership skills through our diverse, adventure-filled curriculum. In the past, Scholars have created cultural masks, headdresses, and drums; cooked a variety of ethnic foods; participated in traditional dances and martial arts; recreated culture-specific games; and learned new languages, including sign language. Exciting field studies have included the Community FabLab, UI Pollinatarium, Krannert Center, the Holocaust Museum, Navy Pier, American Obstacle for zip lining, and much more! Learn more about our Summer Enrichment Program
Our Family Enrichment Program provides Tap In parents and families with special workshops, training, and connections to community resources. Tap In acknowledges parents and families as key members of our Team. Our holistic approach recognizes the role of parents in their child’s success, and therefore we work to create productive and meaningful relationships with the families of our Scholars. We understand that family engagement is as imperative as Scholar engagement, as it increases parental involvement, encourages multigenerational relationships, and strengthens each Scholar’s support system. Finally, connecting families with practical information and local resources increases the odds for whole-family success. To this end, Tap In offers free workshops for parents and family members, with topics ranging from Adult Cyber Night to Financial Literacy.
Tap In Prep Academy is our Head Start School, specifically designed to serve the youngest members of our community, beginning at six weeks old. The goal of this program is to provide a solid foundation for academic success in kindergarten and beyond. TIPA provides educational foundations necessary for kindergarten readiness and incorporates Tap In’s style of culturally-relevant teaching to reflect the Tap In Way®: leadership development, cultural awareness, self-directed learning, tender loving care, and the Tap In tradition of a relationship-centered community. Learn more about the Tap In Prep Academy.
The national Migrant and Seasonal Head Start program encompasses early childhood education, health, parent involvement, and social services for migrant farm-workers. Tap In Leadership Academy is one of eight Illinois delegate agencies contracted by the Department of Human Services (DHS) to provide full-day care for children ages six weeks to six years, including those with severe disabilities, throughout seven regions of the state.
Tap In Leadership Academy opened the community’s first Kick Back Lounge (KBL) in 2015; a high-tech space that middle school Scholars conceptualized, designed, and built featuring digital literacy projects. It includes a music recording studio, film production room, and a digital DJ booth. Scholars create performance and new media art while hangin’ with friends during out-of-school time hours.