After school reading program binds high school and elementary school students each week

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – The school year just started and some Huntsville City Schools students are already pushing each other inside and outside the classroom. The PALS after school reading program was started two years ago by Teach for America alumnus Kylie Hagler with students in the CAP & GOWN project.

Learning during the school day just isn’t enough for some Dawson Elementary and Johnson High School students, so they partner up in the library at Dawson. For the past two year, the PALS program has bound students together with their love of reading.

“It just started with two people and it just evolved from a classroom to the whole school to Johnson,” Johnson High School Student Jailen Young said. “It’s something that I didn’t really have someone to do with when I was young.”

The project is personal for Dawson Elementary student Jaxton Dawdy and his brother, Jebraun.

“I like the PALS program because I can enjoy time with my brother,” Dawdy said. “I love reading because it can help your comprehension.”

The after school reading program opens a new chapter for these little learners.

“It makes me get excited because when I get older, I’ll look back and see what I did for great young kids,” said Aoi’veyona Lucy.

The students meet each Thursday after school is finished.