At the national level, we are in constant discussions about how the current situation will impact the school-age and out-of-school system. The implications for our young people, their families, and our communities are overwhelming and keep so many of us awake at night, as we explore options and solutions to meet overwhelming (and often unknown) needs.
Parents are some of our greatest champions—we need them to be our partners in advocating for school-aged childcare and out-of-school time programs.
If your school system leaders are proposing staggered start times or shift schedules for the coming school year, have parents ask them how they will provide care for children in the hours they are not in class.
If their employer is asking them to come back to work, ask them how they can help ensure their children are safe and well cared for during the hours you are working.
Yes, these are unprecedented times. We need to work together—parents, schools, afterschool, childcare, employers—to create unprecedented solutions.
Our children and our communities are counting on us.
To examine related topics and solutions for the future, tune in for biweekly interactive Zoom conversations: Let's Talk the Future of Afterschool. These conversations provide timely updates and resources to leaders within our membership and inform policymakers, funders, and other decision-makers about the state of the afterschool field's efforts and needs. Visit Webinars to see the full schedule and access past recordings.
—Gina Warner, President & CEO, NAA
Photo courtesy of Allison Shelley/The Verbatim Agency for American Education: Images of Teachers and Students in Action.