Vermont

Vermont Afterschool, Inc.

The Vermont Afterschool Inc. is a public-private statewide partnership dedicated to supporting and sustaining innovative learning opportunities that extend beyond the school day for all Vermont’s children and youth. Our activities are directed toward increasing the quality and availability of education programs during non-school hours.

Accomplishments: 

Policy-Related:

  • Vermont signed into law H.480 (now Act 48) which includes an Expanded Learning Opportunities section that creates a fund for the purpose of increasing access to ELO programs throughout the state. The next step will be for the ELO subcommittee of the PreK-16 Council to develop recommendations on a statewide grant program to award future funding.

  • In 2014 Vermont Afterschool participated in a Legislative Working Group on Expanded Learning Time. The working group, under the PreK-16 Council, reviewed and evaluated issues of equity in and access to Vermont’s expanded learning programs. The working group published a report in December that outlines five key recommendations, including the development of systems, partnerships, and funding strategies to ensure that by 2020 the children and youth in every Vermont community have access to Expanded Learning Opportunities. The report, Every Hour Counts: Vermont Students Succeed with Expanded Learning Opportunities, is available here.

  • The 2014 America After 3PM report ranked Vermont as 4th in the nation for afterschool programming. This ranking highlighted the progress Vermont has made over the past decade in providing quality afterschool programs while also documenting a growing need in our state.

  • Two of our Vermont afterschool colleagues and friends--Nicole Miller and Alissa Faber--were selected by the National AfterSchool Association (NAA) for their “Afterschool: Next Generation” awards. Nicole, director of REACH! afterschool, and Alissa, a Vermont Afterschool trainer, were nominated because of their commitment and dedication to our field.

Professional Development:

  • Vermont Afterschool currently contracts 25 active professional trainers who deliver professional development training in core competency areas. For FY14, Vermont Afterschool launched 23 new and improved workshops. During the course of the year, we fulfilled 64 workshop requests; 25 of these workshops were on STEM related topics.

  • Over 70 people participated in Individual System of Support for Afterschool Programs (ISS-AP) professional learning community this year. ISS-AP offers participants an ongoing and in-depth professional development experience with an experienced coach and a small group of professional colleagues. Strand topics in FY14 included: Knowing Adolescent Learners, STEM, Wellness, YPQI, New Directors, Afterschool Essentials, and Advanced Topics in Afterschool.

Resources for Support:

  • Our Mentors for Quality Program pairs experience program directors with programs across the state to work in-depth on their program improvement goals. This year, 13 mentors attended a two-day Coaching for Continuous Improvement Workshop in order to learn about coaching strategies as well as collaboratively design the mentoring system for Vermont.

  • This year we launched a STEM Quality Initiative to support, inspire, and increase high-quality STEM programming and partnerships in Vermont’s afterschool and summer learning programs. The STEM initiative included a partner group, professional development trainings, and running a STEM ISS-AP strand. As a result of these intense support efforts, eight Vermont communities were able to create new STEM initiatives for kids running at least 20 hours each of new STEM programming this past summer.

  • We developed and published an interactive mapping database with program level information. This information resource is used throughout the year to inform state policy, decision-making, and strategic planning.

  • Vermont Afterschool continues to lead on developing common statewide evaluation measures for afterschool and summer learning programs. A significant part of this effort includes the development, data collection, and analysis of Vermont’s 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21C) program.

Current Projects and Initiatives: 
  • Our current policy work is to implement the recommendations from the Legislative Working Group on Expanded Learning Time’s Every Hour Counts report. This includes statewide funding for ELOs in every Vermont community by 2020.