BOYNTON BEACH, Fla. — It's awards day at Freedom Shores Elementary in Boynton Beach.
Students are celebrating reading through the Roots and Wings program.
Ted Hoskinson oversees the program.
"You need the roots, the tree starts growing small, forms that foundation. Then after that the leaves come out the branches come out and the butterflies come out and you can fly," he said.
Ted was a teacher for 17 years. He and his wife honored teachers.
"We went over to one of the principals new principals and I said is there anything else that we can do, and she said yes, help my kids read," he said.
After Ted's wife passed away, he started Roots and Wings in her memory.
"She wanted to call it Roots and Wings and when we died we were going to do something we were going to leave money to help children and families in need," he said.
He's following through on their dreams.
The after-school program is free for the kids.
The teachers are paid for their extra classroom time.
"So if they show up then we have classes of 10 or less instead of 24 they get to re-shuffle them by what they don't know. We put them in one the class with teachers from the school who knows the kids best. Now we are up to 590 kids in nine schools five years later," Hoskinson said.
Schools in Boca Raton, Delray Beach and Boynton Beach participate.
"To instill in a child the ability and the importance of reading and the idea that if you do read look at what the world can offer you," Hoskinson said.
For more information visit https://www.facebook.com/RootsAndWingsFL.