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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Recruiting and Retaining Older Youth in Afterschool (2009)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with MetLife Foundation, is proud to present the second 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 highlights the importance of afterschool for older youth, the challenges providers face in recruiting and retaining older youth and the innovative strategies that programs have used to better serve older youth in afterschool.

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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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Preventing Dropouts: The Important Role of Afterschool (2013)

Although much progress has been made in decreasing high school dropout rates nationally, over the last decade, significant gaps persist among states, races, income levels, and students with disabilities and limited English proficiency. This issue brief describes the national impacts of the dropout problem, identifies the risk factors, and evaluates how to address the dropout problem and ways afterschool programs can help.

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Older Youth Need Afterschool Programs (2004)

Although much of the funding and programming for afterschool targets younger children, there are myriad of advantages for older youth who participate in afterschool, and 2.3 million more high schoolers would participate in programs if they had the opportunity. This brief explores the unique needs of teens, and the role afterschool can play by providing them a safe environment and preparing them for college and the workforce. Additionally, this brief addresses the challenges afterschool programs face in reaching teens and explores how to overcome them.

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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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Literacy in Afterschool: A Building Block for Learning and Development (2011)

The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with MetLife Foundation, is proud to present the last of four issue briefs in our fourth series examining critical issues facing middle school youth and the vital role afterschool programs play in addressing these issues. This brief emphasizes the dramatic literacy gap between low- and high-income students, and explores how afterschool programs are uniquely positioned to fill those opportunity gaps and support the acquisition of reading and writing skills among underserved youth to help them develop a brighter future.

Academic Enrichment Literacy

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Literacy and Reading in Afterschool Programs (2001)

Many quality afterschool programs offer literacy and reading activities that research indicates provide significant benefits to youth. This brief illustrates the several benefits these reading activities can offer participants, such as improved literacy skills, enjoyment of recreational reading, and building positive relationships with adults.

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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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High School Reform and High School Afterschool: A Common Purpose (2005)

With the information economy of the 21st century upon us, a “skilled” workforce is necessary. Students must leave high school with more than basic proficiency in core subjects to continue on to higher education, career success and productive adulthood. This brief examines the potential role high school afterschool could play in decreasing dropout rates, tackling the achievement gap, and keeping kids on track towards successful futures.

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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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