NEW HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Some middle school students in Rockland County will have to wait a bit longer for the final bell to ring this fall.

Susan Maher and Vicky Shaw, education consultants with the local nonprofit Wellcore, secured a two-year state grant to extend the school day by two hours at Pomona Middle School.

The goal of the new 5:21 p.m. dismissal is to give students in the East Ramapo School District a leg up, WCBS 880’s Sean Adams reported.

“They are going to improve their English and language arts skills, their math skills,” said Maher. “We are going to prepare them for a college track.”

Maher and Shaw hope to help the most vulnerable students succeed.

“Some of them are coming from other countries, where English is not their first language,” Shaw said, adding that more than 700 schools in other states reported improvement in test scores and behavior with a longer day. “They’ve seen data go up with improvement in every area you can measure from an extended school day.”

Pomona Middle School is the first in Rockland County to lengthen the school day.

Parents will learn more about the extended day at a workshop on August 13.

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