The Blog

CLC Academy has doubled in size!

Our private school is hopping with new students! Since August, we have doubled in size and we plan to triple the number of students by the new school year. We are servicing Kindergarten through 5th grade and our kids are primarily receiving scholarships through the Step Up for Students program. This program is proving very successful, as many of our students were previously attending public schools and were struggling to stay on track. These same students are now being instructed at their appropriate academic level, using effective curriculum, and are moving to the top of their class.

Here is what some of our students and parents are saying about their new school:

“The Community Learning Center Academy is the most wonderful school! I have seen a big difference in D’s school work and attitude since he has started. The teachers here are great and so patient. Something you don’t see very often in public school. They have one-on-one teaching here and it’s wonderful. The environment is warm and inviting. My son is so happy here. He wakes up each morning eager and ready.” S.O. (parent) 

“I have been learning to read better and I am spelling better now. I like learning about explosions -like how they take down a building when they are getting ready to build another new building there. I like learning about volcanoes. Eruptions are cool! I like all the kids here! They are all my friends. I like going outside after lunch to play with them. That’s my favorite. We push each other around in the car, too.” M.C. (2nd grade student) 

“I love school! I love Ms. Joanie and Ms. Erika! I have fun driving the play car. I know my ABC’s now. I like that Alex gives me blueberries when I do my work. I like the kids and I like doing numbers. I know the days of the week and my birthday.” J.K. (Kindergarten student)

Enrollment is now open for renewing families who are receiving Step Up for Students scholarship funding. Go to under the For Parents -Income-based Scholarship tabs for more information on how the scholarship works and to apply for the 2017-2018 school year. If you need help filling out the application, please call us at (727) 441-4444.


CLC Academy Parent Dinner

Honor Roll for the 1st time in her life!

sophie-davis-and-theresa-zeitz“My daughter S. has been coming to Clearwater (Community) Learning Center for two years now. She started in the 2nd grade. She was struggling to keep up in school. She hated school and didn’t want to go. As you can see, school has changed a lot since we have gone to school.

“The teachers tell you on Back to School night if your child falls behind, it is up to us as her parents to get her caught up. This can be very difficult considering they don’t send home her workbooks but pull pages out of them and send them home because they want the child to be doing the work, not the parent. We don’t know how they are doing the new math so when we show them how we were taught, it confuses them more. I learned pretty quickly that if I wanted my daughter to learn the basics like addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division that I would have to teach her.

“I still can’t believe they stopped giving spelling words after 1st grade. Then tell me we are going to the computer age and there is spell correct. Wow. You can imagine I’m just shocked about that.

“They (teachers) want them (students) to be able to pass these tests so they can have raises. My daughter is struggling to pass these tests.

“S’s tutor Theresa has filled an educational void and become her teacher. It has been a long road trying to play catch up while they keep pushing S. forward even though she is not ready for it. Finally, we are seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. She is learning her basics with Theresa and that is helping her in school. She is having fun doing it.

“S. is actually getting B’s and is on Honor Roll for the first time in her life. We couldn’t be more thrilled. We would like to say thank you for being there for not only our child but also all children who need help with learning.” -C.D. (mother)

Free Books for Kids event -Saturday, Sept. 10th!

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The next Free Books and Art for Kids event is happening THIS Saturday, Sept. 10th from 11am – 1pm. All kids can take home as many FREE books as they would like.

We will also have:
Info for parents on helping your children
Musical performance by Artists for Human Rights
Ice cream social: $1 cones, $3 create-your-own sundaes
Fun, fun, fun!!!

at Community Learning Center
1411 N Fort Harrison Ave.
Clearwater, FL 33755
(727) 441-4444
This event is open to the public. Bring your friends!!!


The Teacher Who Couldn’t Read

John Corcoran photoJohn Corcoran thought that he would never learn how to read; that something was wrong with him. He was 48 years old before he discovered that something is wrong with the system – the school system.

John Corcoran spoke at the Florida Literacy Coalition conference on May 4th. This coalition is made up of volunteers and professionals who teach adults how to read. One in six adults cannot read above a 4th grade level; a high percentage of those cannot read above a 2nd grade level.

At age 48 he sought help from a volunteer reading coach at a library. She got him tested and it turned out that he just did not know how the written language worked. “A teacher broke the code for me,” he said. And in 13 months he went from a 2nd grade reading level to a 6th grade level. He was then functionally literate. However, it took seven years for him to feel like he could really read anything he wanted to read.

John Corcoran says that his illiteracy “suspended me in childhood”. He had a bad feeling about teachers and about himself. By second grade he had been placed in the “dumb room”. The teachers of course didn’t refer to it as the dumb room, but the students did. He rebelled, got in fights, and was a troublemaker all through elementary school.

In high school, John was an athlete, was popular and dated the valedictorian who did his homework. He stopped being a “cut-up” and became a “kiss-up”. He graduated from high school with a 2nd grade reading level and an athletic scholarship.  (more…)

Teen Athlete Success!

Community Learning Center and We Believe in Me saving lives together!

Community Learning Center has partnered with the We Believe in Me Foundation to help teen athletes improve their skills, their grades and therefore, their chances of being accepted by universities. As a result, they also improve their ability to continue playing football through college. Community Learning Center helps these students improve their ACT and SAT scores so that they are better candidates; we teach them the study skills needed to be able succeed in every area of life. We Believe in Me helps your athlete through the college process, including how to improve your college application and work with recruiters.

Here is another example of a math success from a Community Learning Center and We Believe in Me teen athlete:

“I feel like you [my volunteer tutor] really helped me understand Algebra and its symbols. You broke each of them down to me by showing me, and having me find the meaning of the symbols. Then you explained how to set each problem up and remember how they are supposed to be set up. This became a real eye opener for me in Algebra.”D.M. (Community Learning Center and We Believe in Me student)

CLC Tutor Richard working with 2 WBIM students

Another We Believe in Me Student Success!

Community Learning Center and We Believe in Me are changing lives!

Tah'Shim Knight (WBIM) Oct 2015 (3)“Today, I learned and revisited grammar and how to properly make complete sentences. I learned when to use verbs, colons, apostrophes and past/present tense. I also learned how to pick the best choice for a passage, making it as short as possible.”

“I took my PSAT (Preliminary SAT test) at school. I went in very confident. I feel the only reason I succeeded today on my PSAT is because of the Clearwater (Community) Learning Center. If it weren’t for the CLC I most likely would have winged my test. When I first came to the Center, they gave me two tutors. These two women gave me the knowledge I needed to be prepared. Thank you CLC for my two tutors. They taught me what I needed to prevail, such as past participle, parts of speech, clearing words and reading comprehension. I have now improved almost almost 3 full grade levels in comprehension!”–T.K. (CLC and We Believe in Me student)

We Believe in Me Student Success!

We Believe in Me -4 boys standing“After attending tutoring for awhile, I went back to school and was working on classwork. I started to notice more and more every day some of the things I am learning being tied into my teacher’s teaching. This tutoring has helped (me) gain back some advanced and some simple learning skills that are key in my learning.

I remember being taught back in 4th and 5th grade about my verbs, pronouns, and adjectives, but until tutoring, I couldn’t recall any of the information I was taught about them. I feel this program is amazing. I feel as if it has brought some of the great things I knew back from the dead.”–A.J. (Teen Student)

The Community Learning Center has been working with We Believe in Me Foundation student athletes to help improve their skills and grades in school so that they may continue to play football at university. We help these students with basic skills by filling in the gaps of their education programs and helping prepare them to take the ACT and SAT tests. Our students are better prepared for college because they learn how to study and how to overcome the barriers to study. We are creating independent learners who will become productive members of society. If you are interested in signing your teen athlete up for tutoring, please contact the Community Learning Center at (727) 441-4444. Scholarships are available to families who qualify.

Student Success!

Cayden Hansche 2015 (2)

CLC helped unlock my mind!

“Cayden came to the Community Learning Center early in 2015 while in third grade. He was struggling with reading comprehension and math and was failing in school. Sharon began to work with Cayden and he started understanding better. Her easy-going yet determined personality made it easy for him to like and trust her.

Cayden is now an Honor Roll student. He verbalized that ‘Ms. Sharon helped unlock my mind.'”–N.F. (grandparent)

*The family recently returned with Cayden’s sister who is now in 3rd grade. They want Sharon to “unlock” her mind, too.


Community Learning Center and We Believe in Me

Group shot of We Believe in Me students (from above)Back in the spring of 2015,  Community Learning Center (CLC) began working with the We Believe in Me Foundation (WBIM) to help talented young athletes who did not have the academic scores necessary for admission to college. Brenda McCarthy and Jerry Wunsch, co-founders of We Believe in Me, have been working with CLC staff to get students qualified. Jerry was an offensive lineman for 9 seasons in the NFL with the Tampa Bay Bucs and the Seattle Seahawks.

Our Community Learning Center and We Believe in Me athletes have been working hard to improve their skills, and therefore their grades. Here is a success from of one of our student athletes:

“The Community Learning Center has helped me tremendously. Before I joined this family, I was struggling but I fought my way through and started studying and focusing on my grades and the ACT test all summer. I did virtual classes while others were having fun and enjoying their summer.


I got B’s in a full year of English. Without any of these people that entered my life, I would not be going to the University of Akron.


These people are great and they love their jobs. They worked to help me prepare for the ACT and earn a score of 24, which is excellent!


Thanks to everyone who believed in me and never gave up on me!”–D.G. (Teen Athlete Student)