Issue Briefs

Drawing connections between pressing issues and afterschool

Name almost any topic and the Afterschool Alliance can tell you how it intersects with afterschool in these briefs that are chock-full of information. 

Afterschool programs are a key partner in strengthening communities across the country–from keeping kids active and healthy in the hours after school to meeting the needs of underserved populations to promoting parent engagement. These briefs demonstrate the connections between afterschool and a wide range of hot topics, presenting contextual data on the topic, providing examples of promising afterschool programs and making the case for greater investment in afterschool.

Date Title

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Taking a Year-Round Approach to Literacy (March 2016)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with Dollar General Literacy Foundation, is proud to present this issue brief focusing on the year-round support needed to help students with their reading, writing and critical thinking skills. This issue brief will also delve into the variety of ways afterschool and summer learning programs are taking a year-round approach to literacy, helping students catch up and keep up.

Issue Briefs Literacy

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Featured

Building Literacy in Afterschool (March 2015)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with Dollar General Literacy Foundation, is proud to present this issue brief examining the vital role afterschool programs play to build students' literacy skills. This issue brief will explore the additional support needed to help students with their reading, writing and critical thinking skills; delve into the variety of ways in which afterschool programs are successfully developing students' literacy skills; and provide examples of afterschool programs that are fostering students' love and appreciation of reading and writing.

Literacy

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Looking at the Data: Afterschool Programs Using Data to Better Serve Students (August 2014)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with MetLife Foundation is proud to present the last of four issue briefs in our sixth series examining critical issues facing middle school youth and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. This brief addresses what afterschool programs gain through data collection and evaluation, how to evaluate a program effectively and how to use to data collected for program improvement.

Evaluations

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Keeping Kids Safe and Supported in the Hours After School (May 2014)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with MetLife Foundation, is proud to present the third of four issue briefs in our sixth series examining critical issues facing middle school youth and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. This brief explores the variety of ways afterschool programs are keeping middle schoolers safe, getting them engaged in learning, and helping them take advantage of their full potential as they navigate school, peers and their surroundings.

Working Families

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Afterschool Supporting Students with Disabilities and Other Special Needs (February 2014)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with MetLife Foundation, is proud to present the second of four issue briefs in our sixth series examining critical issues facing middle school youth and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. This brief addresses the importance of a high school diploma for students with disabilities and other special needs, and how afterschool programs can provide an inclusive learning environment that supports students of all abilities.

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Afterschool and the Common Core State Standards (January 2014)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with MetLife Foundation, is proud to present the first of four issue briefs in our sixth series examining critical issues facing middle school youth and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. This brief discusses how U.S. students measure up globally, the call for focus on 21st century skills, the goals of Common Core, and how afterschool programs are working with students, teachers and schools to help them reach these goals.

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Preventing Dropouts: The Important Role of Afterschool (2013)

Although much progress has been made over the last decade -- with high school dropout rates decreasing to single digits nationally -- a significant gap still remains when looking at the graduation rates of students living in low-income communities, African-American and Latino students, students with limited English proficiency and students with disabilities. Dropping out of school has significant consequences for a young persons futureaffecting their ability to find a job, influencing how much they earn, increasing the likelihood of legal troubles and impacting their future health. Afterschool programs are a proven intervention strategy to address the dropout risk factors and provide the necessary supports to students who are struggling. This issue brief highlights evidence of afterschool programs' effectiveness in addressing the dropout issue and makes the case for greater investment in afterschool programs.

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The Importance of Afterschool and Summer Learning Programs in African-American and Latino Communities (2013)

The national economy is slowly recovering from the Great Recession, yet a deeper examination of its effect on African-American and Latino households reveals that these communities are facing higher rates of unemployment, poverty, homelessness and food insecurity. This issue brief looks closely at the current economic state of African-American and Latino communities, the far-reaching impact of poverty on academic achievement and highlights the important role afterschool and summer programs play in supporting youth and families in these communities. Afterschool and summer learning programs provide youth who are most in need of support with a safe and supervised space, healthy snacks and meals, and an academically enriching environment. However, this issue brief outlines the challenges these programs confront to keep pace with demand for their services, as well as ensure their doors stay open to continue to provide essential resources that are highly valued in African-American and Latino communities.

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The Life-Enhancing Benefits of Reading in Out-of-School Programs (2013)

Scholastic Family and Community Engagement (FACE) and the Afterschool Alliance have partnered to spotlight the role of reading in a childs life and the unique ways afterschool programs can incorporate reading into their curricula, promoting students academic success, boosting self-confidence and improving their overall well-being. This issue brief points to research that demonstrate the number of positive outcomes associated with avid reading, such as academic gains, increased drive to do well in school and improved self-esteem. The brief also highlights the important role afterschool programs play in helping students access reading materials, as well as become engaged and critical readers.

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Digital Media & Learning in Afterschool (February 2013)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with MetLife Foundation, is proud to present the last of four issue briefs in our fifth series examining critical issues facing middle school youth and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. This brief discusses the growing importance of digital media and technology in education, the "digital divide" between high- and low-income communities, and the many opportunities and challenges the afterschool field faces with implementing equitable digital learning.

Digital Learning STEM

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