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As the Common Core State Standards are becoming integrated into school curriculum, Out-of-School Time (OST) programs should work to align with these efforts. It is important for United Ways and OST organizations to understand the truth behind Common Core and the variety of ways to align OST program offerings with the standards. This not only enhances students' overall learning, but it also promotes equity by reducing barriers to opportunity.

merging common core and ost programs

How Global Afterschool Programs Can Support Common Core State Standards (2015)
This article from the Asia Society focuses on the overlap between the goals of promoting global competence and working within the Common Core framework. It describes the goals of each individually as well as the ways that these two areas merge. It explains the opportunity for afterschool programs to ensure global competency in addition to success with Common Core.

Afterschool and the Common Core State Standards (2014)
This issue brief from the Afterschool Alliance explores how out-of-school programs have the opportunity to help students develop the communication, problem solving, and critical thinking skills that the Common Core promotes. It explores the Common Core standards, the ways in which students are and are not measuring up, and the role that out-of-school programs can play. Click here for a two-page brief.

Redesigning and Expanding School Time to Support Common Core Implementation (2014)
This report from the Center for American Progress and the National Center on Time & Learning highlights the importance of providing teachers with additional time for continual professional development and collaboration opportunities in order to be able to meet the demands of Common Core. Also, it explains the necessity of giving students additional time to achieve the higher expectations Common Core sets for math and English language arts. The report offers specific suggestions to school districts regarding alterations to their school structure that can improve the effectiveness of Common Core, including how to develop effective extended learning programs.

Linking Common Core and Expanded Learning (2013)
This report from the Partnership for Children and Youth describes ways in which expanded learning programs can integrate programmatic elements to better align with Common Core standards. It provides some promising examples of programs making these connections and highlights the potential for success if these partnerships between expanded learning programs' school-based Common Core efforts are created.

Getting a Head Start on the Common Core (2013)
A unique look into the blend between summer programming and the Common Core, this article from the Partnership for Children & Youth delves into ways summer programs can be used to not only prevent summer learning loss but also to build the capacity of students and staff to prosper in a Common Core environment. It highlights the work of several school districts throughout California who are emphasizing the skills and goals of Common Core in their summer programming.

Building Mastery of the Common Core State Standards by Expanded Learning with Community Stakeholder Partnerships (2012)
This article explains how OST programs are well positioned to be part of the "second shift" in education to reduce the achievement gap. It highlights key research on the need for the Common Core standards to be integrated into OST efforts to maximize the potential success of youth.

The Common Core Standards: What Do They Mean for Out-of-School Time? (2012)
The Forum for Youth Investment released this policy commentary, highlighting specific responses of some out-of-school programs to the Common Core standards. This commentary includes a prediction, made in 2012, on the potential challenges and benefits of integrating Common Core standards into OST programming.

Aligning with the School Day: Practitioner Tips
From You for Youth, this document looks into the six core elements that research suggests are required to align in-school and out-of-school learning. It gives several tips for each of these elements to help practitioners align their programming to best support students and help them grow.

Connecting High-Quality Expanded Learning Opportunities and The Common Core State Standards to Advance Student Success (2011)
This brief from the Council of Chief State School Officers examines the benefit of strengthening the connection between the Common Core and expanded learning opportunities so that both efforts achieve maximum success.

GAIC Afterschool Quality Standards (2011)
This report explores how the Georgia Afterschool Investment Council aligned their Afterschool Quality Standards with the Common Core State Standards.


information on the common core state standards

Common Core State Standards Website
To learn about the Common Core standards, visit the website. It explains the standards themselves and gives a background on how and why they were created. Additionally, it shares resources for parents to better understand what the standards include and what impact they will have on children.

The Collaborative for Student Success Resource Compilation
This organization, which believes that successfully implementing Common Core State Standards is key to setting students on a path to post-secondary success, has compiled a great deal of resources on its website for: parents, teachers, military, business leaders, faith, and higher ed. 

Achieve Tools & Resources
An education reform non-profit organization, Achieve works alongside states to raise graduation requirements and overall academic standards. Achieve was integral in the development of the Common Core State Standards. The resources included below can be used to educate and inform your United Way, an OST coalition, families in your local community, and business leaders about the truth behind Common Core. To access even more resources that Achieve has compiled specific to informing parents and families, click here.

Change the Equation – Common Core State Standards
This two-page brief from Change the Equation explains the key aspects of the Common Core State Standards and the implications of the standards for the community.


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Have a resource you want to share? See something you've created fitting well in the Toolkit?

Email your Out-of-School Time reports, publications, best practices, case studies, blog articles, videos, media mentions, etc. to submissions@unitedway.org. We will contact you if we are featuring your resource in the OST Toolkit.