News and insights about Out-of-School Time in Philadelphia
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 June NewsBOOST

OST Matters
Local Spotlight
Data and Quality Insights
Other News and Highlights
Did You Know?
Fun Facts


OST Matters

July 13 is National Summer Learning Day!  Invite your Congressional district offices and local leaders to come see your summer programs!
National Summer Learning Day is a national advocacy day aimed at elevating the importance of keeping kids learning, safe and healthy every summer, ensuring they return to school in the fall ready to succeed in the year. Your participation sends a powerful message across the nation that summers matter and offers an opportunity to showcase how summers can make a life-changing difference in the lives of young people. Learn more at the National Summer Learning Association.

Local Spotlight

Black Women in Sport Foundation (BWSF)
“Afterschool is important so kids can be more active and not go home and just watch television.”-F., 6th Grade OST Participant*

“Afterschool helps you with homework and teaches you more stuff, like different activities.”-S., 6th Grade OST Participant*

The Black Women in Sport Foundation (BWSF) is an enrichment services provider in the City of Philadelphia which supplies children and youth with exposure to various non-traditional sports, such as lacrosse, tennis, soccer, field hockey, golf, and fencing. Each sports lesson has an instructional component (for students to learn about the sport) and a fitness component (where students are able to practice the sport and engage in competitive play)
Through strong community partnerships with local colleges and universities, students gain an understanding of the discipline and training involved to reach highly competitive athletic levels. Afterschool participants have been able to play in tennis matches at Villanova University, as well as participate in field trips to major sporting events, such as the U.S. Open. 

BWSF also encourages participants to remain physically active in their own neighborhoods. Through the BWSF programming, in partnership with Philadelphia Parks and Recreation, participants of all ages are able to visit different locations in their community where recreational opportunities are offered.
For more information please visit BWSF's website here... 

** The two quotes are from BWSF participants made a during a site visit by PhillyBOOST Vista in February 2016.

Note: We will continue to highlight individual programs and are reaching out to ask providers to get in touch with us to showcase your program in our future issues (and on our website) by emailing us at:

Data and Quality Insights

Understanding potential Out of School Time (OST) need and supply in Philadelphia.

The 2014 edition of America After 3PM*, which is based on responses from 30,720 households in every state and the District of Columbia, found that more than 10 million children attend after-school programs, up from 6.5 million in 2004, when the Alliance conducted its first survey. Although sizable gains have been made in after-school program quality and participation, the unmet demand for after-school programs continues to rise. In 2004, the parents of 15.3 million children said they would enroll their child in an after-school program if one were available; in 2014(at the time of the survey) that number stood at 19.4 million children. While this survey is pretty comprehensive and aggregates demand and supply at the national level, there still is a dearth of such data in specific geographic regions, which makes it hard for planners, policy makers and researchers to estimate accurate supply and demand or need for after-school programs.

As reported earlier, the City’s OST strategic plan includes a series of steps to grow the system and improve its quality. One of the first tasks the City has been working on is to investigate basic supply and potential need or demand for quality after-school programs. This has been an incremental process using various metrics such as the number of City-funded slots, youth poverty rates, availability of community assets (like community centers, religious institutions, senior centers etc.), School Progress Report (SPR) scores ( which includes attendance, PSSA’s and Reading scores), and  Juvenile Truancy and Curfew violations to name a few. The findings thus far continue to highlight certain neighborhoods and zip codes with a large unmet need. This is still a  work in progress, as we continue to refine the findings. The findings will further be strengthened by the upcoming community perceptions survey report to determine the use of the various offerings by parents and youth and gather information on their preferences, needs, schedules, perceptions of available options, barriers to participation, and satisfaction with the programs.



Other News and Highlights...

  • Advancing the High School Graduation Rate in Philadelphia
    Graduating from high school is a critical milestone for youth achieving a successful transition to adulthood. Youth without high school diplomas often face few job options, low annual incomes, and poor health outcomes. High dropout rates within a community are related to higher poverty and crime rates, less tax revenue, and more money and resources spent on social services.

    In 2014, Project U-Turn commissioned PolicyLab at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and Johns Hopkins University to conduct a follow-up study to examine whether the prevention and intervention initiatives reduced dropout rates by addressing the following questions:
    • What were the cohort graduation and dropout rates? What factors related to these rates?
    • How did subpopulations vary in graduation rates and risk factors for dropout?
    • What were the re-engagement rates for high school dropouts over time? Of the students who dropped out of high school and re-engaged, how many participated in a Project U-Turn re-engagement program?
    • How many students eventually enrolled in post-secondary institutions?

    Read the full results of the study at the link here...

Grant Opportunities: 
  • Leadership Programs for Women and Girls
    Eileen Fisher Seeks Applications for Leadership Programs for Women and Girls
    Grants of up to $5,000 will be awarded to nonprofit organizations working to champion the activation of leadership qualities in women and girls. Preference will be given to programs that bring about self-discovery and personal transformation; help women and/or girls find their inner strength and trust their intuition; and/or address any phase of a woman’s or girl’s life. The deadline has been extended to 11am EDT, July 6, 2017.
    More Details here...

 Did You Know?

Many ways after-school prepares kids to succeed in the workplace:

In the summer of 2016, the Riley Institute at Furman University surveyed afterschool state network leads using a comprehensive skills list from the National Network of Business and Industry Associations and additional skills from other nationally-regarded organizations. Survey responses illustrate the extent to which workforce readiness skills are developed in after-school programming and the strategies programs use to grow those skills. Here are some main highlights from the study:

  • The top five workforce readiness skills developed by after-school are teamwork, communication, problem solving, self-confidence, and critical thinking

  • 87 percent of survey respondents report that after-school programs help develop self-confidence “a lot” – 89 percent report similar levels of improvement for teamwork skills, and 81 percent report gains in communication skills

  • STEM/robotics programs are top performers for fostering self-confidence, problem solving, and teamwork development

  • After-school programs create environments where students can engage in reflection, discussion, and argumentative essays to build their critical thinking skills

  • In-school attendance, behavior, and academic performance are seen to improve for students in after-school programs
    More details about the results of this study can be found here...

Sources: Afterschool Alliance and The Riley Institute.

Fun Facts

With July 4th around the corner, here are some fun and historical facts about this holiday!
  • Congress made Independence Day an official unpaid holiday for federal employees in 1870. In 1938, Congress changed Independence Day to a paid federal holiday
  • The Declaration of Independence was signed by 56 men from 13 colonies.
  • Only John Hancock actually signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. All the others signed later.
  • The stars on the original American flag were in a circle so all the Colonies would appear equal.
  • The first Independence Day celebration took place in Philadelphia on July 8, 1776. This was also the day that the Declaration of Independence was first read in public after people were summoned by the ringing of the Liberty Bell.
  •  Every 4th of July the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia is tapped (not actually rung) thirteen times in honor of the original thirteen colonies.
Have a safe and Happy 4th of July!

PhillyBOOST is a collaboration between the various networks of Out-of-School Time (OST) Programs of Philadelphia. We have been working towards building an engaging, robust, data-driven out-of-school time delivery system so that all youth will have the opportunity to be engaged in positive activitiesduringafterschool hours, weekends and summer. PhillyBOOST out-of-school time programs (currently, DHS funded CBO’s, PPR, FLP and a few others) are marked by their use of our Information System and a commitment to continuous program quality improvement. Efforts and resources are being aligned to provide all children in Philadelphia, especially those in greatest need, with accessible, high quality programs and activities resulting in more and better opportunities for learning, while ensuring their safety and wellbeing.

Questions, ideas or feedback (including how you can be part of our growing network of providers)? Please email us at

Visit our website for more in-depth information and regular updates.
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Copyright © 2017 Citywide OST Initiative, All rights reserved.

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