Afterschool|b804f37e-c5dd-4433-a644-37b51bb2e211;Coordinating After-School Resources|9ad0b6e9-5141-44de-a8e4-956a08880906;Collecting and Using Data|8129c491-4496-48d7-a37f-7449a2d51b8c;Quality and Cost|fefa464f-62f9-408a-871c-92dbc12a44d0
Many larger cities in the United States (at least 77 of the 275 cities with populations of 100,000 or more) coordinate afterschool programming, according to this study. At the same time, less than a quarter of those cities have adopted all of the three key coordination strategies identified by citywide afterschool system building experts, namely: (1) the introduction and use of a data system, (2) citywide standards for the quality of programming and (3) a “coordinating entity” to help the many players in the afterschool arena work together. Specific findings include:
- Of the 129 cities recruited for the survey, 77 coordinate afterschool programs, 23 do not and 29 could not identify anyone knowledgeable enough about coordination to answer the question.
- Of the cities that do coordinate afterschool programs, 62 percent use quality standards and 60 percent have a coordinating entity. Only 34 percent have a common data system and only 22 percent have adopted all three strategies.
- Cities that describe their mayors as “highly committed” were far more likely to see stable or increased funding for afterschool coordination. The majority of cities with mayors who were “not at all” or “slightly” committed provided no funding or decreased funding over the past five years.
- Forty-four percent of cities with “highly” or “moderately” committed mayors had a common data system, compared with 20 percent of cities with low or no mayoral commitment.
Points of Interest
At least 77 of the 275 biggest U.S. cities are endeavoring to build systems improving the quality of and access to afterschool programming by coordinating the work of schools, nonprofits, funders and other institutions.
When building afterschool systems, cities were twice as likely to establish standards for program quality than to have set up computer systems to collect data about children’s participation.
The groups most likely to be participating in the coordination of afterschool services in cities are nonprofit organizations, afterschool providers, school leaders, city agencies and local philanthropies.