Throughout the month of October, more than 150 photos were entered into the Lights On Afterschool photo contest and we’re letting Facebook users decide which programs will shine the brightest. Up to three programs are eligible to win $1000 in cash, and one program in a Bright House Networks service area can win up to $2000.
We've also teamed up with some of our statewide afterschool network partners to offer additional prizes to local programs in their state.
To help your program win, all you have to do is vote for their photo on Facebook. You can only vote for a single photo once per day, but come back the following day to vote again! Between Nov. 1-15, each Facebook user can cast up to 15 votes per photo by voting every day. Make sure to encourage parents, program staff, community members and friends to help your program win by voting often.
Throughout the month of October, thousands of afterschool programs rallied their communities to build support for the afterschool programs that keep kids safe, inspire learning and help working families.
And governors across the country got in on the action, too! In all, 48 governors recognized Lights On Afterschool—some proclaimed Oct. 17 as Lights On Afterschool Day in their state, others issued public letters of support and recognition of the good work being done in the state to support students and working families during the hours after school.
We want to extend a special thank you to all of the governors who took the time to help make Lights On Afterschool 2013 such a special event. Here’s the list of governors who proclaimed Oct. 17 to be Lights On Afterschool Day in their state; different actions are noted beside their name. Be sure to tweet them to say thanks!
Just 10 more days to submit a photo to the Bright House Networks Facebook photo contest!
We know you probably took a bunch of photos at your Lights On Afterschool event—show them off by submitting the best one for the chance to win up to $2,000! Click here for contest rules and details.
Need some inspiration? Check out the submissions from last year:
STEM, child care & federal policy filled the agenda when state afterschool networks came to Washington
Late last month, leaders from more than 40 state afterschool networks, including representatives from state education agencies, gathered for several days in Washington, D.C., for a national convening: “Expanded Learning Opportunities: STEM Programs and Systems.”
The convening, co-hosted by the Department of Education, the C.S. Mott Foundation and the Noyce Foundation, focused on creating positive STEM outcomes for more students through collaboration and cooperation among national, state and local partners. Sessions allowed network leaders and education officials to work together to consider how to leverage investments and actions to expand the availability of quality informal science in afterschool and impact more students across the country.
Deputy Secretary of Education Jim Shelton opened the conference with a well-received talk on the partnerships necessary to generate the best possible STEM outcomes in young people. Stating that learning occurring after school is just as essential as learning taking place during the school day, the deputy secretary demonstrated his understanding of the depth and power of informal STEM education occurring in quality afterschool programs.
Over the past 14 years, Lights On Afterschool has grown into a national celebration that has been embraced by thousands of cities and communities across the country. That’s because there’s a growing class of mayors and local policy makers who know that afterschool programs are important for the kids, families and communities they serve. According to a report from the Wallace Foundation, two-thirds of mayors and city managers have embraced coordinated citywide afterschool systems as a way to support local afterschool program improvement and sustainability.
Lights On Afterschool gives communities an opportunity to show off the high bar of quality in afterschool programs in their city andis a great way to build public will and generate demand among parents and kids for quality afterschool programs, as well as cultivate city champions who can advocate on their behalf. In the past, we’ve seen afterschool programs host citywide events that include countless rallies at city hall and other landmarks, a fireworks display in Evansville, Indiana, and even a flash mob at a Denver Nuggets game.
Every day in communities across the country, there are countless unsung heroes working tirelessly to make a difference in the lives of the children and families they serve. Among them are the mentors, volunteers, staff and other educators that keep kids safe, inspire them to learn and help working families during the hours after school and over the summer.
We might not always get the opportunity to thank them, but this fall, we’re teaming up with Bright House Networks to celebrate Lights On Afterschool by shining a light on the afterschool and summer learning programs that are making a difference.
Your program could win up to $2,000 in the Lights On Afterschool Facebook Photo Contest! Starting tomorrow, submit a photo that creatively shines a light on your program and the afterschool activities and staff that enrich and inspire the students and families in your community. Be as creative as possible—the four photos with the highest number of likes will win cash prizes for their afterschool program!
The Afterschool Alliance is very excited to announce that we have formalized a partnership with the Association of Science-Technology Centers(ASTC), the professional association of science centers and museums dedicated to furthering public engagement with science. This formal partnership and the actions we will take form our Commitment to Action for the Clinton Global Initiative America. CGI America is an annual event focused on finding solutions that promote economic recovery in the United States, bringing together leaders from the business, foundation, NGO and government sectors to advance a number of domestic objectives, including education and skills development.
Afterschool programs pride themselves on forming deep and meaningful partnerships in their communities to offer programming that can engage young people. As afterschool providers continue to enthusiastically embrace STEM programming, they are staying true to the philosophy of bringing together community assets and are forming partnerships with STEM-rich institutions in their communities.
Science centers are natural partners for afterschool providers as they have STEM content expertise as well as experience teaching STEM in the out-of-school time environment, frequently provide professional development opportunities for educators, have great hands-on resources, and are increasingly looking to do more community outreach. Science centers range from very large museums in large urban centers to mid-size and smaller locations in small towns and rural areas. While some science centers are already engaged in the afterschool space, many are not aware of the potential of afterschool STEM learning and how they can partner effectively.