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Young Scholars Program: An overview of the benefits that promising students gain from extended day programs

Year Published: 2006

An analysis of the effects of the Young Scholars Program on students in schools throughout North Carolina. Academic and attendance data collected on Young Scholars over the course of five years shows that participation in the program led to gains in math and reading proficiency, improved grade promotion, increased school day attendance, and increased parent involvement.

Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction’s 21st Century Community Learning Centers Executive Summary: 2013-2014

Year Published: 2014

A statewide evaluation of Wisconsin’s 220 21st CCLC programs during the 2013-2014 school year. This evaluation focuses on the academic and behavioral outcomes of these programs. Primary teachers were surveyed to collect data on student academic performances, behavior, and engagement in learning. Key findings include that students who participated in Wisconsin’s 21st CCLC program experienced a number of improvements in academic performance, such as completing and turning in homework on time, school day attendance, and behavior, which includes getting along with others and coming to school motivated to learn.

Washington 21st Century Community Learning Centers Program Evaluation: 2012-2013 and 2013-2014

Year Published: 2015

This statewide evaluation of Washington’s 21st CCLC grantees assesses the impact of the program on participating students during the 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 academic school years. Data collected on youth outcomes included reading and math achievement, GPA, school day absences, disciplinary incidents, and surveys of students that examined students’ motivation, engagement, and beliefs. This study found that students who regularly participated in Washington’s 21st CCLC programs saw gains in their math and reading performance and grade point averages, compared with their non-participating peers. A positive impact was also found regarding school day absences and disciplinary incidents, where regular program participants had a lower number of unexcused absences and disciplinary incidents compared to students not participating in the program.

Washington 21st Century Community Learning Centers Program Evaluation 2017-18 Program Year

Year Published: 2019

This 2019 evaluation of Washington’s 21st Century Community Learning Centers program found that students who consistently attended programs had a higher percentage of credits earned, cumulative GPA, and a lower number of school day absences and disciplinary incidents compared to non-attendees. Additionally, most students reported that it was completely or mostly true that the program helped them improve their academic behavior (81 percent) and self-management skills (77 percent). Students who regularly attended programming for two years had statistically significant higher reading and math test scores, lower school day absences, and a higher percentage of credits earned compared to students who did not attend at these levels. This finding suggests the importance of regular and continued program participation. 

Virtual Y the afterschool program: A ray of sunshine for urban public elementary school children

Year Published: 2005

A report by The National Center for Schools and Communities at Fordham University presenting the results of seven years of evaluation for the YMCA of Greater New York’s Virtual Y afterschool program—an afterschool program that served elementary school students five days a week between 3 and 6 p.m. Teachers reported significant improvements in classroom behavior for Virtual Y participants, including improvement in task motivation, frustration tolerance, learning skills, acting out, peer social skills, assertive social skills, and shyness and anxiety. The average school day attendance of 3rd and 4th grade Virtual Y participants also exceeded the average attendance of a comparison group. Additionally, Virtual Y participants outperformed a comparison group in post-program math scores.

Virginia Department of Education Evaluation of 21st Century Community Learning Centers 2017-2018

Year Published: 2019

A 2019 evaluation of Virginia’s 21st Century Community Learning Centers found that based on teacher-reported outcomes, an overwhelming majority of students improved their academic performance (63 percent), classroom behavior (70 percent), and homework completion and class participation (77 percent). Additionally, students indicated that the programs helped them get better grades, attend class regularly, behave in class, and “prepare for a job or career”. When comparing 21st CCLC students to non-attendees, students receiving special education services in the programs outperformed those not in programs. 

The Relationship between Intensity and Breadth of After-School Program Participation and Academic Achievement: Evidence from a Short-Term Longitudinal Study

Year Published: 2012

This short-term longitudinal study examined 719 2nd grade through 8th grade students participating in the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas during the 2009-2010 school year. Report card data and attendance information was collected. This analysis found that participation in afterschool programming increased students’ overall GPA and school attendance rates.

The Medical College of Georgia FitKid Project: the relations between program attendance and changes in outcomes in year 1

Year Published: 2005

This evaluation studied third graders, a majority of whom were children of color, at 18 schools in Georgia participating in the Medical College of Georgia FitKid Project, an afterschool program that used a fitness curriculum developed by the Medical College of Georgia to reduce childhood obesity. Researchers concluded that children who attended 40 percent or more of the afterschool sessions showed improvement in body fat percentage, bone mass density, and cardiovascular fitness. Students with higher levels of program attendance saw even greater health gains, where students’ cardiovascular fitness and bone mass density increased and body fat decreased as program attendance increased.

The Impact of the ACE Program on Academic Achievement 2016-2017

Year Published: 2018

A quasi-experimental study examining high school students participating in EduCare Foundation’s ACE program found higher academic achievement—as measured by the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) in English language arts (ELA) and math—among ACE participants compared to matched peers attending general afterschool programs. For example, the mean CAASPP ELA score of high school students participating in the ACE program was 35.7 points higher than the matched control group; a statistically significant difference with a moderate to large effect size. When looking at CAASPP mean math scores, ACE participants scored 30.9 points higher than their matched peers, a statistically significant difference with a moderate effect size.  

The Impact of Girls Inc. on Academic and Behavioral Outcomes

Year Published: 2020

This quasi-experimental study of Girls Inc.—a year-round program located in more than 350 cities for girls ages 5-18 that focuses on healthy living, academic enrichment, and building positive life skills—found that girls who participated in the program reported more positive attitudes and behaviors than a comparison group of girls across the 27 outcomes that were measured in the categories of healthy living, academic engagement and success, and life skills. Girls Inc. participants also had higher math achievement test scores and school-day attendance rates than matched non-participants. By year two of the program, 23 of the 27 outcomes were statistically significant in the positive direction, including outcomes such as school engagement; finding school fun in areas like reading, math, and science; getting excited about science; engaging in physical activity; leadership; positive relationships with adults; and postsecondary readiness. 

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