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ERIC Number: EJ1063849
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 15
Research-Based Practices in Afterschool Programs for High School Youth
Holstead, Jenell; Hightower King, Mindy; Miller, Ashley
Afterschool Matters, n21 p38-45 Spr 2015
Structured afterschool programs are often perceived as a service for young children only. Communities often overlook teenagers, expecting more substantial benefits from investments in programs for younger children (Hall & Gruber, 2007). Of about 8.4 million children participating in afterschool programs nationwide, only 1 million are high school students (Afterschool Alliance, 2009b). In addition, only 15 percent of the programs funded by the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) program include high school students (Afterschool Alliance, n.d.). Recent budget cuts in many schools have reduced or eliminated high school extracurricular activities such as music and athletics, leaving some teenagers without safe, enriching activities after school (Hall & Gruber, 2007). A small body of research identifies characteristics of afterschool programs that enhance the academic and social development of high school youth. Given the relatively small number of afterschool programs that serve high school students, ensuring that the programs that do exist follow these promising practices is critical. If existing programs maximize the academic and social benefits of participation by following these practices, more investment in out-of-school time programming for high school youth may be possible. To determine the extent to which high school afterschool programs followed promising practice research, the authors studied 19 21st CCLC high school afterschool programs in one Midwestern state. They looked for research-based promising practices in three key areas identified in the literature: program activities, recruitment and retention, and student choice and voice. They found that evidence-based academic practices such as tutoring services and homework help or credit recovery opportunities were implemented more often than were practices related to student choice and voice. These findings have implications for practice in other afterschool programs serving high school youth.
National Institute on Out-of-School Time. Wellesley Centers for Women, 106 Central Street, Wellesley, MA 02481. Tel: 781-283-2547; Fax: 781-283-3657; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A