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Spurred by unprecedented federal funding and a national call to counter covid-related learning loss, this Westat report provides a summary of how states responded to ARPA funds for summer learning and enrichment programs. The results are presented in 34 slides, based on a review of plans that states created and interviews with 37 states on the vision they developed, and how they engaged partners, implemented priorities, and evaluated results.
This article from the Journal of Youth Development highlights some learnings from a Community of Practice with 10 states on the strategic use of summer and afterschool ARP and ESSER funds. Findings are that states with existing OST infrastructure and cross-system relationships were better equipped to meet youth and family needs. The states have created action plans that focus on: (1) strengthening data to promote access, quality, and outcomes; (2) TA systems to build capacity and promote quality; (3) promoting partnerships; and (4) strategic and sustainable use of funding. There is a suggestion that states invest a portion of their remaining funds to plan for sustainability.
This slide deck shares the first findings released from the National Summer Learning and Enrichment Study conducted by Westat about school-run summer programs in 2021 and plans for summer 2022. The representative findings are drawn from 309 Local Education Agencies. 94% of schools offered some kind of summer programming, serving 18% of students enrolled in school the previous year, with finding staffing as the biggest challenge. 76% used ARP funding, with 75% focused on learning recovery and 57% supplementing with social-emotional learning. 80% also indicated plans to offer programs in summer 2022. A final report will be shared in mid-2023.
This issue brief from the Sperling Center for Research and Innovation (SCRI) explores qualitative findings from surveys with summer 2021 staff to identify strategies to help in recruiting and retaining staff. Strategies include a focus on relationships and collaboration, supportive leadership, ensuring flexibility and autonomy, opportunities for personal and professional growth, and additional support staff. A companion toolkit called the Staff Recruitment, Hiring, and Retention Guide includes tip sheets, a rubric for hiring enrichment staff, and other planning tools; it can be found here. https://www.sperlingcenter.org/resource/staffing-toolkit-for-out-of-school-time-learning-programs/
This study by the Institute for the Study of Resilience in Youth, commissioned by the National Summer Learning Association, was designed to help practitioners, policymakers, and researchers understand the youth perspective on two kinds of summer experiences—structured and unstructured. This representative sample of youth found that youth in structured programs reported feeling more happiness, positive emotions, interest, and better school preparedness than youth in unstructured settings. This could be used to help build the case for more structured summer learning opportunities for children and youth.
The Afterschool Alliance, in partnership with the National League of Cities, has created a map and a chart that shows where states, cities, and school districts are investing COVID-19 relief funds. The charts show how funds are being used, including American Rescue Plan, ESSER III, and local recovery funds. The majority of funds are being used to increase access to afterschool and summer programs, and in addition for teen jobs programs, technology, and staff supports.
The State of California has allocated an unprecedented sum of $4.6 billion in one-time relief and $3.4 billion in permanent funding to expand afterschool and summer learning opportunities. This report provides an historical perspective on how their advocacy efforts planted seeds for more sustainable state investment by building relationships and partnerships with community-based providers, state and federal agencies, and legislators and through strategic communication. The lessons from CA are relevant for other city and state intermediaries who would like to increase city and state investment in afterschool and summer. There is a companion webinar that can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYhNnEijWxk
This report captures information gained from school district leaders, 21st CCLC state program staff, state afterschool network leaders, state education departments, and program partners to better understand the systems of support in district-led and publicly funded summer learning programs in urban districts. This executive summary captures what is needed to improve and advance equitable outcomes for K-8 students, as well as recommendations to strengthen summer learning. The companion webinar can be found at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PsyIb-W_ACE
On May 27, 2022, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released their latest guidance on the coronavirus for day and overnight camps. This updated guidance aligns strongly with the safety protocols and layers of protection discussed in the recent Town Hall Meetings that American Camp Association hosted with the CDC and the Alliance for Camp Health in February 2022. There are three related documents: (1) K-12 and ECE Updated Guidance; (2) K-12 and ECE Frequently Asked Questions Resource; and (3) Camp Frequently Asked Questions Resource.
This website from the National Summer Learning Association includes a summer program locator so families can find both in-person and virtual programs near them. It also has a wealth of links to related resources such as summer meals, literacy and math activities, college and career exploration, and health and wellness. It includes a link to finding a summer job or internship and a Discover Summer Family Guide. This resource supports equity.