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, whether it's keeping kids active and healthy in the hours after school or meeting the needs of underserved populations to promoting parent engagement and beyond. 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.

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English Language Learners: Becoming Fluent in Afterschool (2011)

English Language Learners (ELLs), a diverse group of individuals from across the world who are learning English for the first time, make up the fastest growing segment of the student population in United States public schools. This issue brief displays how the extra time and hands-on learning experiences provided by quality afterschool programs can allow for a specialized, less-formal learning environment in which ELLs can develop language and social skills that otherwise could not be addressed through the less flexible schedule of the regular school day.

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Afterschool and Working Families in Wake of the Great Recession (2011)

Though the economy shows signs of recovery, it is evident that the Great Recession has had dramatic effects on the accessibility of employment for parents, the availability of affordable afterschool programs and, most of all, the education and future of our nation's youth. This brief examines the ways in which afterschool programs have coped with the difficulties brought on by the economic downturn and its impactful effects on children, families and communities.

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Quality Afterschool: Helping Programs Achieve It and Policies Support It (2011)

For years, policy makers, program directors and parents have attested to the widespread benefits of afterschool, backing their claims with extensive research. Promoting quality in afterschool is one way to ensure researchers continue to find positive outcomes that encourage increased investments in programming. This brief highlights the positive impacts of high-quality afterschool programs and shares program characteristics, available tools, current support systems, and federal policies that can better boost quality in afterschool programs.

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Afterschool: Supporting Career and College Pathways for Middle School-Age Youth (2011)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with MetLife Foundation, is proud to present the third of four issue briefs in this series examining critical issues facing middle school youth and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. This brief focuses on the importance of high school and postsecondary school completion for career readiness, and highlights the opportunities afterschool programs can provide to expose students to higher education options and career paths.

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Afterschool: Key to Health and Wellness for Pre-teens and Teens (2010)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with MetLife Foundation, is proud to present the third of four issue briefs in this series examining critical issues facing middle school youth and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. This brief addresses the innumerable health issues facing middle school students, and shows how afterschool programs can provide a place for youth to be physically active and teach them to make healthy choices.

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Summer: A Season When Learning is Essential (2010)

For some children, summer vacations include a variety of enriching activities. But other children find that when schools close for summer, healthy meals, medical care, and learning activities become out of reach. In fact, each summer an estimated 43 million children in the U.S. miss out on expanded learning opportunities. This brief discusses how summer programs can support children by reducing the summer learning gap, keeping kids healthy, and providing them a safe place during the work day.

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Afterschool: Providing Multiple Benefits to Middle School Students (2010)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with MetLife Foundation, is proud to present the first of four issue briefs in this series examining critical issues facing middle school youth and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. This brief discusses the specific needs of middle school youth, the ways afterschool programs can meet these needs, and the barriers to participation that exist among middle school youth.

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Afterschool and Global Competence: Expanding and Enhancing Learning Opportunities (2010)

In our increasingly globalized society, having knowledge about the world and understanding diverse perspectives or cultures is essential, however many youth do not have the opportunity to develop the skills, knowledge and perspectives needed for our global age. The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with the Longview Foundation, is proud to present this issue brief examining the importance of global competence, describing ways afterschool programs are successfully facilitating global learning, and highlighting resources and partners for global learning.

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Executive Summary

Afterschool: A Place for Older Youth to Mentor and Be Mentored (2009)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with MetLife Foundation, is proud to present the last of four issue briefs in this series examining critical issues facing older youth and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. This brief discusses the benefits of mentoring programs to mentors and mentees, the barriers to successful mentoring programs, and how afterschool programs can provide an ideal venue for older youth to mentor and be mentored.

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Afterschool: Providing a Successful Route to Credit Attainment and Recovery (2009)

Academic credit attainment and recovery are predictors of future success in secondary school and college. Unfortunately, once students fall behind, it is difficult for them to get back on track within the regular school day, making them more likely to drop out of high school and not pursue college. This brief discusses how afterschool engages youth to address barriers to attaining and recovering credits, and highlights programs who are successful in this area.

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