“Learning is the only thing for you. Look what a lot of things there are to learn.”
 ~ T.H. White, The Once and Future King

There’s more to a child’s education than reading, writing, and ‘rithmetic. There’s art. Music. Theater. Academic contests. The chance to perform in a concert or to attend a summer program that gives a student the chance to explore a forest.

And that’s where the BCIU’s student enrichment programs come in. Via partnerships with businesses, artists, musicians, colleges, and non-profit organizations in Berks County and beyond, the BCIU offers young people a true wealth of activities designed to enhance and expand their education.

In addition, school students have many opportunities to participate in summer learning programs in the Berks County area and across Pennsylvania.


Berks County’s public high schools compete in four Pennsylvania Academic Competition matches each year from November through March. The format is a fast-paced recall of academic material. The winning team represents Berks County in the final academic competition, held each spring at the State Capitol in Harrisburg.

Tuesday, November 13, 2018/Inclement Weather Make-Up Date: Friday, November 16, 2018
Tuesday, December 11, 2018/Inclement Weather Make-Up Date: Friday, December 14, 2018
Tuesday, January 22, 2019/Inclement Weather Make-Up Date: Wednesday, January 30, 2019
Tuesday, February 19, 2019/Inclement Weather Make-Up Date: Monday, March 4, 2019
Playoff: Tuesday, March 19, 2019/Inclement Weather Make-Up Date: Thursday, March 21, 2019

All matches will be held at the BCIU’s Main Office Building in the Commonwealth A and B Rooms. First match starts at 8:30 AM and the last one should end at approximately 1:30 PM. There are a total of 8 matches usually taking about 30 minutes each to complete.

The match will be postponed if any school is on a delay due to inclement weather and made-up as per the schedule above.

contact: Stacey Kilgore –  – 610-987-8440


The Nolde Environmental Aide Program provides instructional services to teachers and students visiting the Nolde Forest Environmental Education Center. Classes in group problem solving, as well as content instruction in sciences such as ecology, seasons, wildlife, conservation, and sensory information for nature are just a few of the many Nolde class offerings. Discovery learning and hands-on experiences are provided throughout the year. Courses supplement school district curriculum from preschool through secondary levels. The program has been in operation since 1975.

The Berks County Environmental Education Consortium was established in 1988 to:

  • aid school districts in developing environmental education programs for students;
  • provide appropriate training for teachers to help meet state standards for environment and ecology; and
  • promote communication among schools, teachers, and the Nolde Center that improve program services and networking.

The center provides ongoing programs related to Berks Junior and Senior Forums, PA Watershed Education, and ongoing teacher training throughout the year. Additionally, there is a resource library of books and videos related to the Environmental/Ecology Standards. Field learning experiences are available for teachers who bring students to Nolde for hands-on activities.

contact: Brenda Robertson – 610-987-8514 –[br]


In cooperation with the Reading Musical Foundation, Berks County Intermediate Unit coordinates Music in the Schools for elementary-aged students. Professional musicians visit the schools to provide a 45-minute concert to acquaint the students with classical music.

contact: Stacey Kilgore – 610-987-8440 –


The High School Art Exhibit is the final art show of each year for students attending Berks County’s 18 public and one parochial high school, the Reading Muhlenberg Career & Technology Center, and the Berks Career & Technology Center. Students showcase their talent in a wide range of visual arts media. The exhibit is sponsored by Berks County Intermediate Unit and held each spring at Reading’s GoggleWorks Center for the Arts.

contact: Stacey Kilgore – 610-987-8440 –