Especially in urban and lower-income communities, the majority of children go from school to an afterschool program each day during the school year. Many of these children go to summer programs when school is out for the summer.
Cross-training, shared learning goals, and stronger communication and collaboration between school teachers and the staff working in afterschool and summer programs could be a huge benefit to the children.
Afterschool and summer staff in Massachusetts are actively attaining increasingly rigorous professional standards such as degrees from institutes of higher education, ongoing CEU-approved professional development, and bi-monthly observation and ongoing progress along individualized professional development plans.
These educational staff are also implementing lesson plans aligned to the Common Core, integrating STEM and literacy support into programming, and building strong relationships with families and community partners.
Working together to integrate existing afterschool and summer programs more fully into the continuum of education opportunities is a significant and meaningful goal with a huge potential to impact at-risk and struggling children.
It can be as simple as inviting local afterschool staff to participate in teacher training opportunities in order to begin the dialog.
What are you doing to collaborate with your local afterschool or summer programs? How is it working? What are the barriers?