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engaging youth

Foundations for Young Adult Success: A Developmental Framework (2015) 
This visual framework from The Wallace Foundation demonstrates the span of children’s developmental needs from early childhood up until young adulthood. It captures the impact that broader societal contexts, institutions, and systems have on youth development. It is a beneficial resource to understand the interplay of societal factors with individual growth and development in order to effectively structure out-of-school programs.

Helping Youth Prepare for Careers: What Can Out-of-School Time Programs Do? (2012) 
This report from the National Institute on Out-of School Time examines the role of OST programs in ensuring youth readiness for college and career. It describes the difficulties youth experience as they move into the job market and the challenges that schools and higher education face. The authors also draw on their own research and case studies to share challenges of career programming and methods of overcoming barriers to successfully integrate college and career readiness into OST efforts.

Helping Older Youth Succeed Through Expanded Learning Opportunities (2011)
This is the first in a series of briefs created by Harvard Family Research Project and the National Conference of State Legislatures to address topics in expanded learning opportunities (ELOs). This series highlights research evidence on ELO best practices and impacts on youth, and it discusses the policy implications related to this research.

Finding Out What Matters for Youth: Testing Key Links in a Community Action Framework for Youth Development (2003)
Using data from several longitudinal data sets representing diverse populations of young people, this study addresses the questions that policy makers and funders often ask: How well do teens need to be doing to have a solid chance at being successful young adults? How much does doing well at the end of high school really matter for later success? And how much do the touted "supports and opportunities" that families, youth organizations, and schools offer really contribute to success by the end of high school? Gambone, president of Youth Development Strategies, Inc., and her colleagues test the power of three developmental outcomes: being productive (e.g., grades, school engagement and extra-curricular activities), being connected (to peers and adults both in and out of the family), and being able to navigate (e.g., problem-solving and low anti-social behavior). The authors assert that doing well in two out of three developmental areas best positions youth for success in early adulthood; in contrast, having serious problems in two out of three puts youth in the risk category.


aligning with the school day

Think Outside the Clock: Planners Link After-School to Classroom Curriculum (2011)
This article describes city-wide efforts to make good afterschool programs more accessible and, in some cases, link them to classroom learning.

Supporting Student Outcomes: Through Expanded Learning Opportunities (2009)
The purpose of this brief is to shine a spotlight on the role of afterschool and summer learning programs in supporting student success. It also suggests ways to help bridge the divide between afterschool and summer programs and schools.


making the case

The Achievement Gap Is Real (2013)
This four-page resource from Expanded Learning & Afterschool: Opportunities for Student Success provides data for programs to use to make the case for afterschool programming as a means to lessen the achievement gap. It encourages people to communicate the positive impact of afterschool programs to the members of their communities, including key stakeholders and legislators.

ELT: Expanding and Enriching Learning Time for All (2009)
This brief from ExpandED Learning makes the case for expanded learning time by rethinking school structures and schedules. It makes the case for expanding learning time based on her organization's efforts in partnership with New York City Public Schools to increase learning time in 10 schools by at least 30 percent (ELT/NYC). The brief discusses common "core" elements in all ELT/NYC programs, and it reflects on lessons learned, including: the importance of joint planning time for school and program staff, the necessity of tapping multiple funding streams to support the expanded learning day, and the necessity of buy-in from the principal as the most critical factors for success.

After-School Programs Prevent Crime (2009)
Fight Crime: Invest in Kids is an advocacy organization, primarily composed of law enforcement officials, that pushes for policy change to reduce the incidence of youth violence and to help children and youth avoid becoming victims of crime. They advocate for increased access to Out-of-School Time programs as part of a broader policy platform. This Fact Sheet briefly synthesizes research showing that afterschool programs reduce crime by offering constructive alternatives to gangs and drugs during the hours immediately after school — the peak hours for juvenile crime.

Summertime and Weight Gain (2009)
In this brief, Ohio State University statistician Paul von Hippel discusses research documenting significant weight gain of school-aged youth during the summer months. According to Hippel and his fellow researchers, students gain weight two to three times faster in the summer months than during the regular school year. Hippel suggests that summer learning programs can partially help to address the issue by providing additional opportunities for exercise and physical activity, limiting opportunities to eat, and decreasing the amount of time that children and youth spend unsupervised during the day.

After School Programs in the 21st Century: Their Potential and What it Takes to Achieve It (2008)
This research brief from the Harvard Family Research Project explores both whether or not participation in after school programs truly makes a difference for youth and, if it does, what aspects of programming seem necessary in order for positive results to be achieved. Read the Executive Summary first here.

After-School Worries: Tough on Parents, Bad for Business (2006)
In this report, Catalyst and the Community, Families & Work Program at Brandeis University explore the factors that contribute to parental concern about the activities in which their children are engaged after school. The report proposes that companies give greater priority to listening to employees who are working parents in order to mitigate the negative impact of parental stress about after school time and improve employee productivity. Working with parents can benefit both the employer and the employee equally, as this report explains.


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