Franklin Community Schools will partner with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Johnson County for the district’s Cub Care program. The change is hoped to fix staffing problems the program has experienced and bring new programming to students, district leaders say.

Cub Care is a before and after school program that the district offers for students. The program employs part-time help, with about a quarter of the current Cub Care staff working for the district during the school day. The program is part-time to avoid the cost of benefits, as Cub Care was designed to be a self-sufficient program that doesn’t pull money from the district’s budget, said Tina Gross, chief financial officer for Franklin schools.

“It’s hard to find people that don’t need the benefits, and with the labor force the way it is right now, it’s hard to find anything,” Gross said. “These positions are supportive roles and not meant to be a part of the staff. It’s outside the normal employees’ work hours as well.”

The agreement for one initial year of service for the 2022-2023 school year was approved during a joint meeting of the Franklin Community Schools Board of Trustees and Franklin City Council meeting on Monday. The agreement would be extended if district leaders and club leaders are satisfied, Gross said.

The Boys and Girls Club will pay people for their work with Cub Care, so if they also work at Franklin schools, they won’t go over the 30 hours of weekly work for one agency that would trigger benefits, Gross said.

Per the contract, the registration fee will increase from $20 to $25 per child and from $30 to $40 per family. Daily rates of $5 for before-school care and $10 for afterschool care will remain the same, along with rates of $3 and $5 for students who qualify for free and reduced-price lunch, respectively, said Natalie Fellure, executive director of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Johnson County.

Franklin schools will keep $10 of each registration fee and the Boys and Girls Club will keep the rest, Gross said.

The structure of Cub Care will remain the same but students will have access to new programming such as Indiana Kids, a tutoring program, and Smart Moves, a program focused on health. wellness, and preventative education, Fellure said.

“There’s no overarching changes because they don’t need to be made,” Fellure said. “We’re hoping all the staff will stay on with us. The times and the schools will all stay the same, other than being able to provide Boys and Girls Clubs of America-based programming, we’ll bring some of that in. But the day-to-day operations will be the same.”

Students will still be able to attend Cub Care at school or the Boys and Girls Club, said Robin Betts, Franklin schools’ spokesperson, who has served as Cub Care’s director.

“Some kids thrive in the atmosphere at the club, whereas not all students would do well in that atmosphere and vice versa,” Betts said. “For the students, I think the access to the Boys and Girls Club and their mission and programming are huge for our students. From an employer’s perspective it allows both parties to employ quality programming to help children socially and academically before, during and after the school day.”