Afterschool Research: Evaluation and Data

The research is in: afterschool works 

A growing body of research shows that afterschool programs are helping kids to learn, grow and thrive.

Long-term evaluations, meta-analyses, state-level program studies, individual program assessments—over the course of the past 15 years, the research demonstrating the positive impacts of quality afterschool programs have on students has continued to grow. This section offers a compilation of recent afterschool research, including figures on the number of children participating in afterschool.

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Top 10 States for Afterschool (Oct 2014)

This report highlights the top 10 states in afterschool programming and provides data supporting these rankings. Top 10 States for Afterschool is presented as part of third edition of America After 3PM, which spans a decade of household survey data chronicling how children spend the hours between 3 and 6 p.m.

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The Evidence Base for Afterschool and Summer (April 2021)

This research brief synthesizes findings from nearly two dozen evaluations of afterschool and summer programs that demonstrate the evidence of the positive impact programs have on academics, social and emotional skills and competencies, and overall well-being to help students re-engage in learning and emerge from the pandemic strong, resilient, and hopeful.

Evaluations

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Taking a Deeper Dive into Afterschool: Positive Outcomes and Promising Practices (February 2014)

Knowledge of the afterschool field has grown substantially in the past 15 years, confirming that quality afterschool programs increase participants’ engagement in school, reduce their participation in at-risk behavior, and raise their academic performance. Growing emphasis on evidence-based practices has increased the frequency of afterschool program evaluations, making the positive outcomes of participation in programs more transparent. This report reviews these outcomes by synthesizing high-quality evaluations of 10 programs, summarizing promising practices from research spanning hundreds of programs, and providing specific examples of practices used in programs.

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Summer Learning Programs Help Kids Succeed (June 2015)

This fact sheet provides data on the current state of summer learning programs indicating that the demand and support for these programs are high. Summer Learning Programs Help Kids Succeed is presented as part of the third edition of America After 3PM, which spans a decade of household survey data chronicling how children spend the hours between 3 and 6 p.m.

Summer Learning

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Preparing for Back to School and Navigating Summer in the Time of COVID-19 – Wave 2 (September 2020)

After six months in a COVID-19 world, with the continued uncertainty of when things will return to normal, this brief, Preparing for Back to School and Navigating Summer in the Time of COVID-19, combines findings from a survey of parents along with the second in a series of surveys of afterschool and summer providers to monitor the state of the afterschool field. The Wave 2 provider survey of 1,047 afterschool and summer program providers, conducted between July 20 and August 31, finds that providers are growing increasingly worried about their program’s long-term sustainability, but despite these struggles, programs continue to provide supports to the children and families in their communities, with strong majorities of parents believing in the value of afterschool and summer programs, as well as supporting public funding for these opportunities.

Surveys COVID-19

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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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Evaluations Backgrounder: A Summary of Formal Evaluations of Afterschool Programs’ Impact on Academics, Behavior, Safety and Family Life (2015)

The most recent evaluations available today continue to support the important role afterschool plays in student development and success. This updated evaluations backgrounder includes new research outlining the positive impacts of afterschool programs on academic performances, behavior, safety, attendance, avoidance of risky behaviors and parental involvement, and the importance of frequency and duration of participation in seeing these benefits.

Evaluations

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Evaluations Backgrounder: A Summary of Formal Evaluations of Afterschool Programs' Impact on Academics, Behavior, Safety and Family Life (2011)

The most recent evaluations available today continue to support the important role afterschool plays in student development and success. This updated evaluations backgrounder includes new research, from the local to national scale, demonstrating the impact of afterschool programs on participants’ academic achievement, behavior, safety, and wellness, as well as the support they provide working families.

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Evaluations Backgrounder 

A compilation of evaluations of afterschool programs looking at academic outcomes, student behavior and parental concerns about children’s safety.

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America After 3PM: Special Report on Summer: Missed Opportunities, Unmet Demand (May 2010)

The Afterschool Alliance is proud to present this report as part of the second edition of America After 3PM, which spans five years of household survey data chronicling how children spend the hours between 3 and 6 p.m. This special report addresses key finding related to the need for summer programming, the unmet demand within each state, and a persisting opportunity gap.

Summer Learning

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