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ERIC Number: ED523997
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Oct
Pages: 41
Abstractor: ERIC
Can After-School Programs Help Level the Academic Playing Field for Disadvantaged Youth? Equity Matters. Research Review No. 4
Gardner, Margo; Roth, Jodie L.; Brooks-Gunn, Jeanne
Campaign for Educational Equity, Teachers College, Columbia University
As schools struggle to meet federal achievement standards, after-school programs are increasingly viewed as a potential source of academic support for youth at risk of school failure. The hope among youth advocates and policymakers is that after-school programs can partially compensate for the inequities that plague the nation's schools and play a role in efforts to narrow gaps in achievement between more and less advantaged students. As this review of research suggests, however, rates of participation in after-school programs remain relatively low among disadvantaged and minority youth--the very youth who may be most in need of academic assistance. The authors highlight potential reasons for these low participation rates and examine the proposition that increasing rates of after-school participation among economically disadvantaged and minority youth will lead to more equitable academic outcomes. The authors (a) describe the current state of after-school programs, including rates of participation across different socioeconomic groups, (b) review evidence on the academic benefits of participating in after-school programs, (c) discuss steps that could be taken to increase access to high quality, sustainable after-school programs, (d) attempt to quantify the potential impact of increasing disadvantaged youths' rates of after-school participation on achievement gaps, and (e) make recommendations for future research and policy. (Contains 1 table and 13 notes.)
Campaign for Educational Equity, Teachers College, Columbia University. Box 219, 525 West 120th Street, New York, NY 10027. Tel: 646-745-8282; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Columbia University, Campaign for Educational Equity