Rotary club pledges funds for virtual learning center on Hilton Head

A tutor looks on as two students use the computers at the current virtual learning center.
A tutor looks on as two students use the computers at the current virtual learning center.

The Van Landingham Rotary Club has pledged to raise money to help a nonprofit organization establish a virtual learning center at a Hilton Head Island apartment complex.

The club has pledged to raise $75,000 of the $100,000 needed to establish Neighborhood Outreach Connection's planned center. The center will provide students and teachers with the technology they need for after-school tutoring sessions and homework help.

The Neighborhood Outreach Connection focuses on connecting residents of distressed neighborhoods on Hilton Head Island and the Bluffton area with resources and services they need. Their flagship program includes the after-school tutoring sessions, which currently take place in apartments at The Oaks on Hilton Head.

Volunteer tutors and local teachers help the students with homework and computer-based tutorials in reading and math. This summer, students also participated in the Beaufort County School District's virtual summer school program. About 180 children are enrolled in the after-school tutoring program.

The planned virtual learning center will replace old, borrowed computers with newer models. More students will be accommodated, too, since there will be more space.

Families in the area will also be able to use the computers to access resources and increase their involvement in their children's education.

The Van Landingham Rotary Club plans to raise the funds at their annual television auction on WTOC. The event will be from noon to 3 p.m. on Feb. 24.

The club considered more than 20 local organizations -- and visited six of them -- before selecting Neighborhood Outreach Connection as the major beneficiary of the action.

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Hilton Head High soccer team lends a hand at neighborhood tutoring center, April 30, 2012