Archive for February, 2011

Save NJ After 3!

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

 A message from NJ After 3

After facing devastating State budget reductions last year, the Governor’s current budget proposal, submitted to the Legislature, eliminates all support of New Jersey After 3 for the 2011-2012 school year. 
This elimination of New Jersey After 3’s afterschool programs delivers a devastating blow to 5,000 students and their families, who rely on these programs to keep kids safe, improve student achievement, and support working parents. 

We need your help to convince our legislators to fight for these programs!
New Jersey After 3 is a statewide, nonprofit organization that expands learning time in public schools each day through evidence-based afterschool programs. 
New Jersey After 3 is a proven strategy that improves student achievement and development. The first public/private partnership of its kind, New Jersey After 3 partners with community-based organizations (e.g., Boys & Girls Clubs, cultural centers) to serve thousands of children. Without intervention, the proposed elimination of these services will lead to serious immediate and long-term ramifications for communities across the state:
IMMEDIATE IMPACT: Without these programs, the safety and well-being of thousands of New Jersey students will be in serious jeopardy, and workforce productivity will be compromised.
— More than 5,000 students in thirteen school districts across the State will be left unsupervised during the most dangerous time for kids, 3 pm to 6 pm, during which juvenile crime rates triple.  The effects of putting more kids on the streets at a time when urban districts are increasingly forced to cut social services and lay off public safety officers, has explosive potential to detrimentally impact community well-being.
— Furthermore, the workforce in these communities will be hit hard, during a period of high unemployment.  More than 500 afterschool educators will lose their jobs, and thousands of working parents will no longer have affordable afterschool options for their children.
— In a recent independent evaluation of New Jersey After 3’s services, 9 out of 10 parents reported that these programs helped them to keep their jobs, and the majority said it helped them to work more hours and miss less work.
LONG-TERM IMPACT:  Today’s students are tomorrow’s workforce, with investment in their achievement as an investment in our State’s future success. By building upon school day learning, New Jersey After 3 provides students with the knowledge and skills necessary to graduate high school, succeed in the workforce, and, eventually, transform their communities.
— As early as 6th grade, student engagement and academic performance serve as powerful indicators of whether a student will graduate high school (Balfanz & Herzog, 2005).  New Jersey After 3 expands learning time each school day for K-8 students in order to provide students with critical academic enrichment and hands-on activities that exercise creative skills, inject relevance into learning, and keep kids invested in school.
— Independent evaluation has demonstrated New Jersey After 3’s positive impact on student achievement and behavior, including language arts skills, study skills, and enjoyment of school (Policy Studies Associates, 2009; 2011).  With over 200 failing schools in New Jersey, New Jersey After 3 stands out as a cost-efficient and effective strategy for improving student outcomes and keeping kids engaged in school.
— Not only do we need to get our kids to graduate – we need to ensure that they develop the complex 21st Century skills necessary for the modern workforce. Various studies show how afterschool programs help to train the future workforce and provide students with the opportunity to learn critical skills like teamwork, leadership, applied math and communication skills.
Last year, New Jersey After 3 was able to reinstate its State funding through a successful campaign, due in large part due to the voices of our parents, teachers, and thousands of New Jersey After 3 supporters.  Your participation will make a difference!
Please take a minute to sign our electronic petition and appeal to the Governor and our elected legislative leaders to fully support New Jersey After 3 in next year’s budget, and sustain future investments in this vital asset.

CLICK HERE TO SIGN   

NJAfter3-logo

New Research!

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

 From Child Trends: 
“Our findings suggest that many of the issues that compromise healthy development for African American and Latino children can be addressed successfully,” says Kristin Anderson Moore, Ph.D., co-author of both analyses.  ”Although it is important to note that these strategies are not exclusive to the African American and Latino populations, such information can improve program design, implementation, and effectiveness.” 

The data on program impacts for African American and Latino children and adolescents were drawn from Child Trends’ database of random assignment evaluations of social interventions for children and adolescents – LINKS (Lifecourse Interventions to Nurture Kids Successfully).

  • More than half (18 of 33) of rigorously evaluated programs were found to have a positive impact on at least one child outcome, especially in the area of substance use.
  • Programs that target families tend to work.
  • Programs that directly address the cultural norms and practices of their participants have positive impacts across outcomes.
  • Inclusion of Spanish-speaking program facilitators is a critical component for positive outcomes. 

Among the findings from What Works for Latino/Hispanic Children and Adolescents: 

  • More than half (29 of 53) of rigorously evaluated programs were found to have a positive impact on at least one child outcome, especially in the area of reproductive health.
  • Programs that foster partnerships between the community and schools tend to work.
  • Strategies or components that garner family buy-in appear to be a critical component to program success.
  • High-intensity programs that meet on a consistent basis more often and frequently tend to result in impacts for African American children and adolescents. 

Among the findings from What Works for African American Children and Adolescents: 

African American and Latino/Hispanic children and adolescents often face challenges that differ from each other and from other groups of children in the U.S.  Although a number of out-of-school time programs serving African American and Latino children have been implemented, data on which approaches work among these groups are scarce. Two new Child Trends syntheses fill this gap by reviewing rigorous evaluations of out-of-school programs to identify programs that work, as well as those that do not, and the intervention strategies that contribute to program success.  The programs targeted outcome areas such as reproductive health, substance use, and physical health and nutrition. 
 What Works in Out-of-School Programs for African American and Latino Children
New Analyses Based on Rigorously Evaluated Programs

New Date for Train the Trainer!: March 24, 2011

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

Training the Trainer

A Day of Tools, Tips and Tricks to build Quality Staff Development Workshops, Trainings and Meetings

With Diane Genco, NJSACC Executive Director & Sarah Cruz, NJSACC Enrichment Support Specialist

This full day workshop will focus on Tools, Tips and Tricks of Successful Trainers as well as focusing on developing staff development workshops in any topic, which will engage and energize staff.

Have you always wanted to be a trainer?
Are you already a trainer and want to refresh you skills?
Do you want to save $$$ on Professional Development in the long run by developing quality trainings in-house?
The training will be perfect for you!
Lunch will be provided

Fee: $125
Date: Thursday March 24, 2011
Time: 10 AM to 2:30 PM
Location: NJSACC
Directions: CLICK HERE FOR DIRECTIONS
Registration is due by: March 18, 2011

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

Grant Writing for Out of School Time Programs: Final Day to Register is Friday

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

2 day Symposium

If you’re looking for additional funding but have limited time or experience with writing grant proposals, then this workshop is for you. In this two day course you’ll learn common grant components and tips for success from a seasoned grant writer/reviewer.

You will be given guidance on searching for funding opportunities and will begin writing your own proposal with peer review and instructor feedback. Both novice and experienced grant writers will benefit from the collaborative, supportive, and insightful instructional format.

Also included, tips to develop skills for building partnerships, resolving community needs, and developing community support.

You’ll leave with the confidence that you CAN write a grant!

Recommendation: Bring your own laptop for a more personalized experience.

Course Outline

  • Overview of the grant process
  • Different types of funding require different types of approaches
  • Review of standard RFP sections
  • Planning and project development tips
  • Searching for funding
  • Using a Logic Model as a planning tool
  • Suggestions for successful proposal writing
  • Peer and Instructor review

Lunch will be provided

Fee: $250

Date: Friday March 4, 2011 & Friday March 11, 2011

Time: 10:00 to 2:30 PM

Please arrive promptly to begin the workshop at 10 AM.

Location: NJSACC Office located at:
170 Elm Street, Westfield, NJ 07090

(Located in the bell tower of the First Baptist Church of Westfield, NJ)

Registration is due by: February 25, 2010

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

Trainer: Jane Sharp
My first grant proposal was drafted on notebook paper in 1985 and submitted to a secretary to type on a typewriter. That proposal was successful, and while technology has changed quite a bit since then, the strategies for success haven’t. It’s still just a matter of finding a funder whose objectives are compatible with your situation, selecting a strategy for effectively communicating your ideas, and carefully following the instructions from the funder. This sounds simple, but after years of professionally reviewing grant proposals, I’m still amazed at how many people completely miss their mark.

Over the past 25 years I have written grants, reviewed grants, written RFPs (Requests for Proposals) for state government, monitored state contracts, and evaluated local programs. I provide professional research and grant writing services and develop logic models that can be used as templates for multiple grant proposals. My passion, though, is teaching others how to write successful grants for themselves.

Action Alert!

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

Afterschool Alliance Action Alert
 
On February 19, 2011, the House of Representatives passed HR 1, a Continuing Resolution (CR) which includes over $60 billion in spending cuts compared to the FY2010 budget. Included in the widespread funding cuts is a $100 million cut to the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) initiative. Such a cut will result in about 100,000 fewer children participating in afterschool and  summer learning programs, and a loss of about 10,000 jobs. The CR will be voted on by the U.S. Senate late this month or in early March. Please contact your Senators and Representative by phone, email, fax, or in person, in the coming days to oppose funding cuts to the 21st CCLC initiative. Consider attending local Town Hall meetings or inviting members of Congress to afterschool programs to explain how afterschool programs keep children safe, inspire learning and help working families.

Take Action Now: http://capwiz.com/afterschool/issues/alert/?alertid=14813216
 
The cuts to afterschool are part of a broader effort to trim government funding which could also negatively impact many of the families who benefit from afterschool programs.
For more information on proposed cuts to education, service programs and nutrition assistance, see: http://www.chn.org/save4all/index.html and http://www.saveservice.org/ 
 
afterschool alliance