multiple meanings. This selected list of definitions defines terms as we use them in this document.
The hours after the standard school day, generally between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. Another term gaining in frequency is “out-of-school time.” We use “afterschool” to include summer programs as well as the hours before and after the standard school day.
Sites at which children and youth spend time engaged in planned, intentional activities including academic learning, structured physical activity or play, enrichment activities, mentoring relationships, etc.
A wide variety of organizations offering afterschool programs, such as public school-based, community-based, corporate-run, private school-based, faith-based, home-based and 21st Century Community Learning Center programs, and the individuals who staff them.
The measurement of quality in all areas of an afterschool program’s administrative practices and programming. This formal activity is based upon the identification of measurable behaviors, with specific indicators of achievements in using identified best practices in each area of measurement. The Oklahoma Afterschool Quality Standards are designed for use in conjunction with the Youth Program Quality Assessment tool, a research-based and thoroughly tested document.
The goal of accurate assessment. Assessment tools gather information allowing program providers to sustain those best practices they are engaged in and make changes on a continuous basis. Changes based on assessment data bring programs closer to best practices.
An acronym for Oklahoma Afterschool Quality Standards.
Intentional content afterschool providers prepare and present to youth participants. Content areas include academic, social-skills, health and wellness, etc.
Structured continuing education aimed at improving the professional strengths of afterschool staff members and, thereby, bringing the programs they staff closer to best practices as defined in this document.
An acronym for the disciplines of science, technology, engineering and math. These are key areas of focus for advanced education and training and the Oklahoma workforce. Some use the acronym STEAM, adding the “A” to broaden this important group of academic disciplines to include art, or STEAMD, to include art and design.
School-age individuals from 5 to 18 years old who are potential participants in afterschool programs. For brevity, we use the word “youth” to include this entire age range. Some documents use the word “child” for younger individuals.
A positive intellectual, emotional, social and physical process during which school-age children evolve into adulthood.
An acronym for Youth Program Quality Assessment, an evidence-based assessment tool used to help programs “set meaningful improvement goals based on data, enact new practices and create powerful developmental environments for youth.” (David P. Weikart Center for Youth Program Quality, cypq.org).