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By Megan Beckett

Expanding numbers of kids are engaging in after-school courses, and with extra federal and country investment the variety of such courses is probably going to develop. This development has been happening, in spite of the fact that, with little advice as to what application good points or practices should be so much valuable in nurturing the tutorial success, emotional improvement, and well-being of the kids concerned. This publication is helping fill that want for information through delivering a collection of 18 version practices opposed to which after-school courses may be evaluated. The authors supply how you can rating adherence to the standards, from very good to insufficient; survey kinds for gathering the knowledge to assign those grades; and an illustrative software in their method of a collection of real-world after-school courses.

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Extra info for Accountability for After-School Care. Devising Standards and Measuring Adherence to Them

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Schools provide little opportunity for interaction with other age groups—a shortcoming that after-school programs can address (Alexander, 1986). Mixing of different age groups within after-school programs is thought to benefit older children by fostering initiative, responsibility, nurturing, cooperation, and re- 22 Accountability for After-School Care spect for others through mentoring (Alexander, 1986; National Research Council and Institute of Medicine, 2000). In addition, younger children and adolescents may be provided with an opportunity to master a range of different skills and abilities (National Research Council and Institute of Medicine, 2000).

The most frequently offered activities (on a daily basis) in a national survey of before- and after-school programs were socializing (97 percent of programs), free time (95 percent), games (89 percent), reading (86 percent), time for homework (81 percent), physically active play (81 percent), and arts and crafts (61 percent) (RMC Corporation, 1993). Some authors believe that offering an array of activities yields several benefits, including the fostering of decisionmaking skills and creativity (Alexander, 1986); time and space for physical play such as running, jumping, and climbing as well as time for the emotional release that art, dramatic play, and sand and water play provide (Alexander, 1986); and the capturing of participants’ interests and subsequent increased retention rates (Belle, 1997), particularly at older ages.

0. For each practice, we multiplied the percentage of publications within a tier by the weight. 32. We obtained crude scores for each practice by this method. 20. Those practices that stood out from other practices having substantially stronger or substantially weaker support were identified by the standard statistical convention of standard deviations. Thus, practices with a score one standard deviation below the mean were classified as having limited support in the literature; practices with a score within one standard deviation of the mean were considered as having moderate support; and practices with a score at least one standard deviation above the mean were considered as having strong support.

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Accountability for After-School Care. Devising Standards and Measuring Adherence to Them by Megan Beckett


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