In Context

In the United States, more than 15 million school-age children (26 percent) are on their own after school. Among those, more than 1 million are in kindergarten through 5th grade. (Afterschool Alliance, 2009)

The parents of more than 28 million school-age children work outside the home. (U.S. Department of Labor, 1998)

Nine in 10 Americans want all children and teens to have some type of organized activity or safe place to go after school. (Afterschool Alliance; Lake, Snell, Perry & Associates, 2004)

Over three quarters of Americans (76 percent) agree that members of Congress, state and local elected officials should increase funding for afterschool programs. (Afterschool Alliance; Lake, Snell, Perry & Associates, 2008)

Only 8.4 million children in kindergarten through 12th grade (15 percent) participate in afterschool programs. An additional 18.5 million would participate if quality programs were available in their communities. (Afterschool Alliance, 2009)

The hours between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. are the peak hours for juvenile crime and experimentation with drugs, alcohol, cigarettes and sex. (Fight Crime: Invest in Kids, 2002)

Currently, the federal government contributes only 11 percent of the cost of afterschool programs, while 29 percent of the children in afterschool programs meet the federal government's definition of low-income and in need of federal assistance. (Afterschool Alliance, 2009)

Teens who do not participate in afterschool programs are nearly three times more likely to skip classes than teens who do participate. They are also three times more likely to use marijuana or other drugs, and are more likely to drink, smoke and engage in sexual activity. (YMCA of the USA, 2001)

Nobel laureate in economics and early childhood education expert James Heckman has posited that a combination of early education and participation in afterschool programs can reduce drug use among youth by nearly 50 percent while reducing the likelihood of their skipping school by half. ("Investing in Our Young People," University of Chicago, 2006)

The Study of Promising After-School Programs found that regular participation in high-quality afterschool programs is linked to significant gains in standardized test scores and work habits, as well as reductions in behavior problems among disadvantaged students. (University of California, Irvine, 2007)

Parents miss an average of eight days of work per year due to a lack of afterschool care. Decreased worker productivity related to parental concerns about afterschool care costs businesses up to $300 billion per year. (Community, Families and Work Program at Brandeis University, 2004; Catalyst, 2006)

An analysis of 73 afterschool studies concluded that afterschool programs using evidence-based approaches were consistently successful in producing multiple benefits for youth, including improvements in children's personal, social and academic skills, as well as their self-esteem. (The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning, 2007)

Children in the LA's BEST afterschool program attend school more often and report higher aspirations for finishing school and going to college. LA's BEST participants are 20 percent less likely to drop out and are 30 percent less likely to participate in criminal activities than those who don't participate. Researchers estimate that every dollar invested in the LA's BEST program saves the city $2.50 in crime-related costs. (National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards and Student Testing at UCLA, 2000, 2005 and 2007)

Students in programs supported by The After-School Corporation improved their math scores and regular school day attendance compared to non-participants. High school participants passed more Regents exams and earned more high school credits than non-participants. (Policy Studies Associates, 2004)

Participants in Citizen Schools' afterschool programs are much more likely to go on to high-quality high schools compared to non-participants (59 percent versus 28 percent). Former Citizen Schools participants were also significantly more likely to graduate from high school in four years when compared to Boston public schools students overall. (Policy Studies Associates, July 2009)


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