education & enrichment
Raising Your Children in Phillips County
Phillips County offers a variety of K-12 and higher educational opportunities at a level virtually unknown outside of major metropolitan areas. However, unlike other areas, most of these opportunities are completely free to traditional students.
At the pre-college level, Phillips County offers several options including three traditional public school systems, KIPP Delta Public Schools (a nationally-recognized tuition-free public charter school system and member of the award-winning national KIPP network), and two private schools. Phillips County also has an abundance of Pre-K programs, including free programs affiliated with several public school systems and the outstanding Phillips County Developmental Center.
You can learn more about each school system by following the links below:
- Desoto Schools
- Marvell Academy – Call 870-829-2931
College & Career
Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas (PCCUA) includes three locations, with its flagship campus located in Helena. Comprised of a lovely campus nestled among the rolling green hills of Crowley’s Ridge, it offers Career and Technical courses to high school students; Technical Certification in everything from cosmetology to phlebotomy; Certifi cates of Profi ciency and Associates Degrees in a wide variety of disciplines; and four-year degrees offered by other universities on-site or via distance learning. In addition, PCCUA has a renowned open-enrollment nursing program which recently boasted a 100% pass rate for the Arkansas state board of nursing exam.
Free College Education: The Great Rivers Promise, one of the most progressive scholarship programs in the country, is a program of Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas (PCCUA) that guarantees any student who attends all four years of high school at any school in Phillips County – public or private – and graduates with good attendance and without any major disciplinary incidents will be able to attend PCCUA tuition-free. For more information, click here or call 870-338-6474.
Outside of school, opportunities abound for young people to find healthy, positive ways to enjoy themselves. The J.R. House Athletic facility offers nearly year-round leagues, including baseball, softball, soccer, and pee-wee football. The Helena Community Center offers programming throughout the year from boys and girls basketball leagues to arts & crafts, computers, and even a toy lending library. In addition, a number of organizations strive to get and keep youth on the right track. Some of the oldest are Freedom for Youth in Helena and the Boys, Girls, and Adults Community Development Center (or “BGACDC”) in Marvell.
The newest provider on the scene is the Boys & Girls Club of Phillips County. Having opened its doors initially in 2006 and completed a 19,000 square-foot $1.1 million mega-facility in 2008, the Boys & Girls Club offers year-round afterschool and summer programming for over 700 members ages 6-18 spanning Character & Leadership; Education & Career; Health & Life Skills; Arts & Music; and Sports, Fitness and Recreation. The Boys & Girls Club also features a partnership with the NBA through its Junior Grizzlies basketball league for boys and girls from Kindergarten through 11th Grade, as well as a baseball program.
Similar programs, both secular and church-based, are also present in Marvell, Elaine, Lake View, Lexa and other parts of the county.