THE HISTORY OF TEAM PRIME TIME
Executive Director Peter Straus created TEAM PRIME TIME (TPT) in response to the critical need for after-school programming for at–risk children from low–income areas of Los Angeles. With over eighteen years of experience teaching and coaching in LAUSD Schools and at his Prime Time Sports Camp, Straus was all too familiar with this crisis. Most programs that did exist ended at the elementary school level, creating the void at the middle school level TEAM PRIME TIME set out to fill.
TPT first opened its doors on February 6, 2001 to 21 students at Webster Middle School (Webster MS) a Title 1 school where over 75 percent of students qualified for some form of government aid. The program continues to enjoy great success as demonstrated by the program’s sustained growth, enhanced program content, strategic partnerships, and ultimately, the ongoing success of the students in the program. There are currently over 250 students enrolled at Webster MS alone, a twelve-fold enrollment increase in less than 8 years!
In the Fall of 2004 Team Prime Time extended its programming to an additional at-risk population – children with developmental disabilities – by creating its full-inclusion sports program, the Prime Time Games ® (the GAMES.) As the centerpiece of TPT’s leadership component, the GAMES gives TPT students the opportunity to peer–mentor and coach, creating a win–win situation for everyone involved. Over 300 “athletes” have participated in the GAMES since its inception.
TPT looks forward to celebrating the 20th Season of the Prime Time Games in the Winter of 2013.
The 2006-07 academic year provided even more excitement as TPT, in partnership with the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), opened two new sites, Palms Middle School and Westside Leadership Magnet. In so doing, TPT doubled its outreach, providing comprehensive after-school programming for over 600 at–risk youth.
TPT opened it’s 4th location, Emerson Middle School, in the Fall of 2008. By the end of the 2008-09 academic year, TPT was serving over 600 students per day, and over 1,500 students per year, a 75-fold increase in just 8 years.
2012 proved to be another historic year for TPT. The much-anticipated Prime Time Games High School Division Pilot Program (“Varsity Games”) got off to a great start with Venice High School and University High School participating in the first full inclusion high school sports league of its kind. University HS won the best of three basketball season series, 2 -1. TPT looks forward to welcoming at least 2 new schools to the Prime Time League in Spring, 2013.
The 2012-13 school year also saw TPT open its 5th after school program location, Marina Middle School. This truly solidified TPT’s place as the leader in providing quality after school care for our community’s most at risk children - middle school students - during the most dangerous hours of the day – from 3pm - 6pm.
That’s what we mean when we say, “Helping Our Kids When It Matters Most.”