||Vol 1, Issue 2
NJ Afterschool Action
News, Policy and Research
Welcome to NJ Afterschool Action!
I was delighted that Governor-elect Christie chose to spend the day
after his election visiting a school in Newark. Improving our schools and
cities is essential to New Jersey's future.
Afterschool programs are among the most cost effective ways to extend
learning for students. Study after study shows that quality afterschool
programs lead to improved grades, increased school attendance and better
At the same time, afterschool programs keep young people off the
streets and productively engaged between 3 and 6 PM, when juvenile crime soars.
Parents miss fewer days of work and perform better on the job when they know
their children are safe after school.
NJSACC is ready to work with the Christie administration to strengthen
afterschool programs in order to improve educational outcomes, increase public
safety and keep New Jersey parents in their jobs.
How do you think Governor-elect Christie can improve afterschool in New
Jersey? Send your comments to email@example.com.
Read. Learn. Get
involved. Together we can make a difference.
NJSACC Extends Science Learning through Afterschool
NJSACC's Executive Director, Diane Genco and Chad Ripberger, County 4-H Agent of Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Mercer County were selected to serve as the state leaders
for New Jersey's participation (one of eight states) in a three-year
project recently funded by The National Science Foundation (NSF). The
eight states involved are California, Georgia, Maryland, Minnesota,
Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, and Ohio.
This project, called, Taking
NPASS (National Partnerships for After School Science) to Scale:
Creating State-based Professional Development Networks for
Out-of-School Time (OST) Science, will identify
and train ten to twelve New Jersey afterschool professionals as science
trainers for afterschool providers throughout the state. The project
builds on new Jersey's leadership in afterschool science education, and
on our statewide campaign connecting children and the environment, "Celebrate Afterschool! Outdoors in the Garden State".
leadership for the project includes the Center for Science Education
at EDC, the Boston Children's Museum, and the National Institute on
Out-of-School Time (NIOST).
New Community Building Initiatives in Newark and Camden Include Focus on Out of School Time
Governor Corzine recently announced two new initiatives that take a
comprehensive approach to improving student outcomes, including a focus
on students' out of school time. Both initiatives seek to keep young
people in school and on the pathway to college.
are part of the Strategy for Safe Streets and Neighborhoods, a
plan created in 2007 to battle violent crime through more
aggressive law enforcement, prevention programs aimed at at-risk youth,
and re-entry programs for convicted offenders leaving prison. Governor
Corzine called the programs "innovative and
evidence-based initiatives that will help to build better futures by
raising standards, lifting expectations, and by ensuring that supports
are there to meet those goals." Attorney General Anne Milgram,
Education Commissioner Lucille E. Davy, Newark Mayor Cory
Booker, Harlem Children's Zone Founder, President and CEO
Geoffrey Canada, New York University Professor and Broader,
Bolder Approach co-founder Dr. Pedro Noguera as well as other project
partners attended the launch event held at the Quitman School in Newark.
>Click here to read more
Extended Learning in Action: Citizen Schools
Almost 300 Newark middle school children are leading mock trials guided by attorneys, working with structural engineers to plan new residential buildings and participating in other experiential learning experiences through Citizen Schools. This month, we profile Citizen Schools' unique approach as part of our series on extended learning in action.
Citizen Schools, an organization founded in Boston in 1995, connects students to community professionals through real-work experiences and apprenticeships. Through its volunteer training, Citizen Schools prepares adult 'Citizen Teachers' to create rigorous hands-on learning projects and meaningful engagement with middle school youth. >Click here to read more
Opportunities Are Bringing New Attention to Afterschool Programs
The practice of providing
students with extended learning opportunities (before- and after-school,
weekend, and summer) to expand their learning and participate in a variety of
extracurricular activities is long standing. Afterschool programs provide young
people with a positive alternative to spending time on the streets or being
home alone in the afternoons. A growing body of research indicates that
high-quality after-school programs can reduce risk-taking behaviors, provide
positive developmental opportunities, and improve the academic performance of
students, particularly those at risk of academic failure.
Extended learning opportunities (ELO), as a means to reduce the
achievement gap and improve student outcomes, have captured the attention of
policymakers and funders alike. ). U.S. Secretary of Education Arne
Duncan has also long been an advocate of this model since his days working in
Chicago Public Schools. President Obama has also endorsed the
For New Jersey afterschool organizations, attention to extended learning
can lead to funding opportunities and new tools to strengthen programs and
improve student outcomes. At their hearts, afterschool organizations are
extended learning organizations. They build new skills, create opportunities for
leadership, and guide social and emotional development for young people. Every
program has a story to tell about a child that has thrived both in and out of
Support for these programs comes from the local, state and federal
level, with substantial federal support coming through the 21st Century
Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) program and additional support through
the Supplemental Educational Services (SES) provisions of the No Child Left
Behind Act (NCLB).
Over the next few months, NJ Afterschool Action will highlight news,
profiles of Extended Learning in Action, research and resources all
related to ELOs. Additionally, NJSACC will offer several trainings,
webinars and technical assistance to programs interested in learning more about
NJSACC Welcomes First Class of Afterschool Ambassadors
|Second class to be inducted in January 2010
the network for New Jersey's afterschool communities, welcomed its
first class of Afterschool Ambassadors this month. 19 Ambassadors were
chosen for their leadership, expertise and commitment to the field of
"Afterschool programs work hard every day to help children succeed in
school and in life. I want to represent the field, to share our
successes and help programs be even more effective," says Theresa A. Roessner, Afterschool Ambassador.
NJSACC Afterschool Ambassadors are a select group of leaders in New
Jersey's Afterschool communities who volunteer to serve as
spokespeople, conveners and resources for the field. Afterschool
Ambassadors will work with NJSACC to build countywide networks of
afterschool organizations, advocates and partners. Afterschool
Ambassadors will develop public awareness of afterschool issues, build
a strong network for afterschool program professionals, and establish
professional development opportunities throughout the state.
field is changing rapidly as we learn more about how afterschool can
improve the odds for children and families. We are looking to the
Ambassadors to build local and countywide support for the kinds of high
quality afterschool programs that make a real difference," says Diane
Genco, executive director of NJSACC.
All Ambassadors receive special training workshops and
networking opportunities. An application for the second class of
Ambassadors will be available soon. Completed applications will be due on December 4, 2009. If you have questions about the Afterschool Ambassadors, please contact Sarah Cruz at firstname.lastname@example.org.
>Click here to read more
PL 80 Update
|Last month, we told you about PL 80, new state legislation requiring
certain districts to develop plans for comprehensive afterschool programs.
NJSACC is examining standards for quality afterschool that will help
these districts develop effective plans. We have put together a review
committee that includes both providers and state funding agencies. The
committee is currently looking at NJ State licensing standards, National
Afterschool Association Standards for Quality and afterschool quality standards
from other states.
Our goal is to endorse a set of standards for quality afterschool that
protect the safety and wellbeing of children and staff and promote extended
learning opportunities, social and emotional development and full engagement of
We look forward to sharing this new tool with you. In the meantime,
please send comments and suggestions to email@example.com.
49 States Participate in 10th Annual Lights On! Afterschool
Annual Event Featured Nearly 8,500 Events Nationwide
Communities around the
country honored the importance of quality afterschool programs for the
10th annual Lights On! Afterschool celebration held on October 22,
2009. 147 events were held here in New Jersey, up from 87 in 2008 and
the event was recognized by a proclamation from Governor Corzine. The
US Department of Education also participated in Lights On!
Afterschool. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said, "Learning
doesn't just happen in a classroom between school bells...Children learn
all day long. So it's vital to give students and their families the
tools, the facilities and the opportunity to continue working on traditional academic subjects as well as a place for broader lessons in areas like art and music to enrich their lives."
Learn more about the Lights On! Afterschool campaign and see photos from the events by clicking here.
Annual Afterschool Conference A Success
NJSACC's Annual Afterschool Conference was held last week in Princeton,
NJ on November 13 and 14, 2009. More than 400 attendees enjoyed an
exciting Friday opening session that featured performer Flora Cruz, a
parent and consumer of afterschool care for her 9 year old daughter,
singing her inspirational song "Let the Sunshine Out" and workshops on
topics including bullying, incorporating nature and science into
afterschool programming and playground safety. Saturday's conference
began with a rousing performance from "Seventh Principle", an West
African dance group from Young Audiences NJ.
Our 2009 conference was presented in
partnership with the National Institute for Out of School Time (NIOST),
the NJ Department of Education, and the NJ Department for Children and
Families. The NJ Principals and Supervisors Association and the
Foundation for Educational Administration sponsored a special sequence
of workshops for program directors and principals called "Aligning the
Learning Day: Collaborative Strategies for Principals and Afterschool
Program Directors" presented by Dr. Paul Young. In addition to his
role as Executive Director of the West Afterschool Program in
Lancaster, OH, Dr. Young will assume the role of Interim Executive
Director of the National Afterschool Association (NAA) beginning on
January, 1, 2010.
Look for details on our 2010 Conference on NJSACC's website next Spring.
Thank you so much for reading this edition of NJ Afterschool Action. We want to hear from you, so please send your questions, comments, and ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org
New Jersey School Age Care Coalition
This newsletter is a part
of the New Jersey Afterschool Network, the policy arm of NJSACC. The Network
builds lasting public support for quality afterschool programs across New Jersey. Led by a
public-private partnership, the network enhances public awareness and support;
offers guidance for parents, providers, and advocates; strengthens
relationships with policymakers, funders, practitioners, and parents, and
shares best practices in the field.