Afterschool Research: Promising Practices

Innovative programs and promising practices across the country

Shining a light on more than five dozen afterschool programs that are engaging students in learning and promoting student success.

Afterschool programs come in all shapes and sizes, offer students a host of enriching activities, and serve a diverse group of students—keeping kids safe, inspiring learning, and supporting working families from communities like rural Parma, Idaho to Baltimore, Maryland. Take a look at the innovative and exciting afterschool programs we have highlighted over the years that are helping students succeed.

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Afterschool in Action: How Innovative Afterschool Programs Address Critical Issues Facing Middle School Youth (2012)

With support from MetLife Foundation, the Afterschool Alliance is proud to present this compendium containing a series of four issue briefs examining critical issues facing middle school youth, schools and communities, and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. The four briefs address: aligning afterschool with the regular school day; bullying prevention; service learning; and promoting literacy. The compendium also includes profiles of successful programs and a discussion of the MetLife Foundation Afterschool Innovator Awards

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Afterschool in Action: Innovative Afterschool Programs Supporting Middle School Youth (2013)

This year marks the fifth round of the MetLife Foundation Afterschool Innovator Awards. For the past five years, we have collaborated to highlight the work of quality afterschool programs that support children, families and communities across the nation. This compendium includes an in-depth profile of 2012 Afterschool Innovator Award winners, a review of 2008-2011 winners, and a compilation of four issue briefs exploring afterschool’s role in school improvement efforts, arts enrichment, parent engagement and digital learning.

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Afterschool in Action: Promoting Middle School Success Through Innovative Afterschool Programs (2014)

In collaboration with the MetLife Foundation, the Afterschool Alliance is proud to present the sixth and final round of the MetLife Foundation Afterschool Innovator Awards, highlighting the exemplary work of afterschool programs around the country. This compendium provides an overview of this work, highlights the nearly 100 programs featured in MetLife Foundation issue briefs through the years and presents profiles of the five 2014 award winners. This compendium also includes four briefs discussing: the Common Core State Standards; supporting students with disabilities and other special needs; keeping kids safe and supported in the hours after school; and using data to better serve students.

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Afterschool Innovations in Brief (2008)

With support from MetLife Foundation, the Afterschool Alliance is proud to present this compilation of four issue briefs examining critical issues facing children, schools and communities, and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. The four briefs address: teacher recruitment and retention; bridging schools and communities; fostering success in school; and supporting family involvement in schools.

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Afterschool Innovations in Brief: Engaging Middle School Youth (2011)

With support from MetLife Foundation, the Afterschool Alliance is proud to present this compendium of four issue briefs examining critical issues facing middle school youth, schools and communities, and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. The four briefs address: the multiple benefits of afterschool for middle school youth; Science, Technology, Math and Engineering (STEM); health and wellness for pre-teens and teens; and pathways to higher education and careers.

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Expanding Learning Opportunities: It Takes More than Time (2007)

Recent pressure to increase academic achievement has led new educational reform strategies to include ideas on extending the school day. However, increased classroom time alone may not be enough to improve academic outcomes. This brief examines the high-quality afterschool program model and the goals of the extended school day movement, seeking to identify the role the afterschool program model can play in informing the implementation of a quality extended day initiative.

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Library and Afterschool Partnerships (Sept 2017)

With the support of STAR_Net (the Science Technology Activities and Resources Library Education Network), a project of the Space Science Institute’s National Center for Interactive Learning (NCIL), and the American Library Association, the Afterschool Alliance surveyed 365 afterschool providers on their perceptions of public libraries, what kinds of partnerships they have, as well as ideas for future growth.

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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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