- Assist afterschool leaders in creating community partnerships to support the financial sustainability of quality afterschool programs
- Hone the alignment between afterschool learning and formal instruction during the school day
- Encourage expanded learning during afterschool in the areas of science, technology, engineering, math (STEM) and the arts
- Identify needs for additional program resources
- Assist parents in identifying quality programs and establishing mutually beneficial relationships with program staff
- Create awareness for policymakers about the benefits and return on investment that quality afterschool programs provide to a community
- Raise awareness in the public, with policymakers and with afterschool providers about health and wellness initiatives
Those who can benefit from familiarity with and use of these standards include the entire network of organizations and individuals involved in afterschool programs. Those who create and administer programs, those who fund them, the youth and families who participate in them and others invested in the idea of afterschool program quality are as diverse as the programs themselves.
A 21st Century Community Learning Center
No matter into which category your program falls, you can improve it by turning to this document as an adaptable guide toward excellence. Anyone thinking of starting a program can use these standards as a blueprint for planning and preparation.
SUPPORTERS AND FUNDERS
Whether offering grants or donations or serving as a mentor or speaker in an afterschool program, those who invest time and resources in quality programs will guarantee the best return on their investment. Understanding what helps create and sustain quality afterschool programs is essential. Our standards are based on research-supported ideas and provide measurable indicators of success.
YOUTH AND FAMILIES
Parents want to select and be a part of the best afterschool program possible and to communicate with afterschool providers successfully. These standards provide help in making sound choices and in understanding how to talk about what matters with afterschool program personnel.
Oklahoma’s schools are dedicated to providing Oklahoma youth with the highest quality educational and social preparation for life success. Afterschool programs are partners in this goal. Understanding what quality afterschool programs look like will create a common vocabulary and identify best practices in this joint effort.
Policymakers, community leaders, governmental agencies with oversight responsibilities, advocates for children and youth in non-governmental organizations and even just concerned citizens will find in these standards a guide to understanding quality afterschool programs.