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The EXCEL program is a recreation-based, fee-for-service before and after school program run by the Halifax Regional Centre for Education. Currently offered in 69 elementary schools, EXCEL is an option to parents who are seeking before and after school care for their elementary-aged children. At each school site, the dedicated and qualified staffing teams plan weekly games and activities that suit the needs and interests of the registered students. These individual plans are framed around EXCEL’s overall philosophy which is focused on physical activity and positive social interaction in a safe and fun environment.

Our programs differ from site to site due to varying factors such as program size and operating space but our site programming objectives are consistent. Since EXCEL’s inception over 25+ years ago, we have continually enhanced our program based on our experiences and the feedback received from participants, parents and staff. The evolution from a primarily supervisory child care program to today’s recreationally-based program is in response to this feedback. Today, with more than 4000 participating students, we are one of the largest programs of its kind in the Maritimes that provides engaging and inclusive games and activities for our program participants.

Highlights of our program include:

  • EXCEL offers both structured and unstructured activities each afternoon.
  • EXCEL provides a minimum of 45 minutes of structured physical activity every day.
  • EXCEL offers outdoor physically active play opportunities each day, weather permitting.
  • EXCEL provides an opportunity for individual choice in programming each day.
  • EXCEL brings in our own special guest presenters and external programmers.
  • EXCEL offers P.A.L.S. Playground Activity Leaders in Schools for participants in Grades 4-6.
  • EXCEL offers HRQ/Gym (Homework/Reading/Quiet Time/Gym) time each afternoon from 5:30 to 6:00 pm enabling those who wish to complete homework the opportunity to do so.
  • EXCEL is a “High Five” registered organization.

To learn more about HRCE's EXCEL recreational programs, please watch this short video, or click on the following links:

2023-2024 EXCEL Staff Contact Listing - Click here

2023-2024 EXCEL Program Sites, Programs Options & Program Times - Click here

2023-2024 EXCEL Parent Handbook - Click here