Out-of-school Time

Out-of-school time programs include before- and after-school programs, evening and weekend programs, and those that take place during the summer and other school breaks.

The National Institute on Out-of-School Time (9) reports that quality out-of-school time programs provide a variety of enrichment activities that:

• keep young people safe;
• provide opportunities for positive and consistent relationships with adults and peers;
• offer time for physical activity and proper nutrition;
• promote skills development and exploration of interests;
• enhance positive character traits and life skills; and
• help strengthen academic skills.

Key Facts

* Research shows the benefits of quality programs for children and youth when they are not in school including the fostering of positive physical, social, and civic development and the prevention or reduction in problem behaviors. (10)
* Research on mentoring shows that the presence of caring adult mentors in children’s lives makes them more likely to achieve academically, exhibit fewer risk behaviors and show enhanced social and emotional development. (11)
* On school days, the hours from 3 to 6 pm are the peak hours for youth to commit crime; to become crime victims; to smoke, drink, or use drugs; or to engage in sexual activity. (12)

Recommendations

* Foster statewide, regional, and local partnerships to build capacity and sustainability of quality out-of-school time programs for children and youth.
* Increase the allocation of state funds for school-based and school-linked after-school programs.
* Explore ways to increase out-of-school time programs, including the leveraging of federal funds and the involvement of private and business interest groups.
* Continue and expand support for mentoring programs.

Other resources:

Voices’ issue brief Afterschool Programs in Vermont: Supporting Success for All Students Afterschool Issue Brief

Notes:
1. Source: www.leg.state.vt.us/database/racts/results.cfm.
2. A Citizen’s Guide to School Funding: Vermont’s Act 68. Act68_2006
3. Ibid.
4. Ibid.
5. National Conference of State Legislatures, “Vermont Education Finance Study,” January 2004.
6. Source: http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/states/profile.asp.
7. Source: http://www.ruraledu.org/docs/sapss/sapss.html
8. Thomas A. Lyson, “What does a school mean to a community? Assessing the social and economic benefits of schools to rural villages in New York,” Journal of Research in Rural Education 17 (2002): pp. 131–37; http://rnyi.cornell.edu/document/pdf/rural%20schools%20and%20community%20identity.pdf; www.ruraledu.org/docs/dollars.pdf.
9. Vermont Out-of-School Time Network; www.voost.org/ index. php/voost/what_is_out_of_school_time
10. The Forum for Youth Investment, “Out of School Research Meets After-school Policy,” October 2002, p. 1; www.forumfyi.org/Files//ostpc1.pdf
11. S. Jekielek, K. Moore, and E. Hair, “Mentoring Programs and Youth Development: A Synthesis,” Washington D.C.: Child Trends, 2002.
12. National Youth Violence Prevention Resource Center; www.safeyouth.org/scripts/teens/after.asp.

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