Nationwide, 6.5 million school-age children participate in OST programs that are intended to protect their safety, help develop and nurture their talents, improve their academic performance and provide opportunities for them to form bonds with adults and older youth who are positive role models. These programs include a wide array of models and approaches.
Some are focused exclusively on boosting academic achievement through special courses, tutoring and homework help. Others are specifically focused on providing cultural enrichment in the visual, performing and culinary arts; recreational activities and athletics; or leadership training and community service. Still others are comprehensive programs with multiple activity offerings.
Across the country, policymakers, community leaders, educators, law enforcement officials, service providers, and parents are working to create new, high-quality OST programs to help young people learn and grow in safe settings with caring and committed adults. To be successful, these leaders need good information about developing promising program models, recruiting and retaining strong staff, establishing standards that promote quality, building necessary management and administrative infrastructure, and measuring the effects and effectiveness of their initiatives. They also need good information on the costs of quality programs and how these costs vary depending on the population of children and youth being served, the location of programs and services, the management and staffing structure, the hours of operation, and any necessary ancillary supports and services, such as transportation and special facilities. Reliable cost information is a critical ingredient for sound planning and budgeting.
Click here to read the full study about The Cost of Quality for Out-of-School-Time Programs.
Source: The Wallace Foundation