School's Out: Policy Implications of Quality Accountability and Assessment in Afterschool Programs

Research during the last decade provides evidence that high-quality afterschool and youth development programs can positively influence a range of child and youth outcomes, including academic, social, and emotional behaviors and development. The success of afterschool programs, however, rests largely with their quality. In a webinar broadcast October 14, 2010, panelists Tabitha Grossman (National Governors Association Center for Best Practices ), Charles Smith (David P. Weikart Center for Youth Program Quality and The Forum for Youth Investment) and Julie Spielberger (Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago) looked at approaches to quality improvement, assessment, and accountability in afterschool programs in states and local communities around the country and the implications for policy.

Highlighted in the presentation was Prime Time, a nonprofit intermediary of community stakeholders in Palm Beach County aiming to enhance the quality of afterschool programs through a county-wide Quality Improvement System (QIS). This system provides a case study of what is referred to as a "lower-stakes" accountability model, in which the focus is less on periodic ratings of quality and more on continuous quality improvement. Panelists discussed the meaning of "high-stakes" and "low-stakes" accountability and described the development and implementation of the QIS by Prime Time.

To view a recording of this webinar, click here.


Authors: Charles Smith,Tabitha Grossman,Julie Spielberger

Publisher: Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago

Weikart_Center_slides.pdf - 814.26 KB