November 2020
A+ Afterschool!
Adapting Afterschool - Deb Pierson

"These are unprecedented times for families, businesses and schools. Because of the pandemic, the way things are done has changed in every aspect of our lives especially K-12 education. Across our country you will find education being done in-person, through a hybrid model, exclusively online or a combination. In the Iowa City area, the program has changed from online, to a hybrid and now back to online. The Before and After School Programs (BASP) have pivoted with each change and continued to provide care as best as possible with the new safety standards, DHS regulations and Iowa City Public School guidelines.

Deb Pierson, Program Director for the Penn Elementary (North Liberty) BASP is an exceptional leader who needs to be recognized for the unique and committed way she is providing care during the recent change back to online only.

With support from the school principal and the BASP Board of Directors, on Monday, November 16, the Penn Elementary BASP will open from 7:30 am -12:00 pm to assist online learners. Each participating student will bring their Zoom schedule and school supplies to school each day. Supplies include a fully charged Chromebook, headphones, reading and math workbooks, spiral notebooks, sharpened pencils, clever badge, and water bottle.

Children must eat breakfast at home. One snack will be provided and the school will provide lunch at the end of the program for each child to take with them. All students and staff will be required to wear a mask while at BASP. Parents also must call the program from outside when dropping off and picking up their children. They may not enter the building.

A win-win for everyone. The BASP remains open providing essential care, students have a structured school setting with assistance, and parents can continue working uninterrupted with confidence their children are getting the support they need to academically succeed due to Deb’s passion, initiative and care for her program’s students."

Deb Pierson was nominated by Dawn Oliver Wiand, President and CEO of the Iowa Women's Foundation.

To nominate an administrator, student or program for the A+ Afterschool Award, please fill out this form.
The Relationship between STEM Programming and Mentorship
Join the Active Learning Community Partnership (ALCP) for the second webinar in our Million Girls Moonshot series! This webinar will focus on the importance of mentoring in STEM programming, and its impact on diverse communities.

Webinar Topic: How to Build Strong Mentoring Opportunities for your STEM Program
Date: Wednesday, December 2nd
Time: 9:00-10:00 AM
Great Podcasts to Pass the Time
Back to BUSINESS Iowa Podcasts - An Examination of Child Care in Iowa
3 Part Series

PART 1 - Ryan Page, Childcare Regulatory Program Manager and Team Lead for the Childcare Bureau under the Division of Adult, Children, and Family Services within the Iowa Department of Human Services speaks with host Steve Adams on the status of childcare in the state—especially the effect the pandemic has had on service providers and the various resources the state provides to this critical industry. Ryan is a member of the Iowa Afterschool Alliance Strategic Leadership Team.

PART 2 - Jillian Herink, Executive Director of the Iowa Association for the Education of Young Children, a non-profit organization which promotes high quality education for children from birth to age 8 by connecting practice, policy, and research. Ms. Herink connects the importance of quality childcare with creating and sustaining a healthy economy in Iowa.

PART 3 - Dawn Oliver Wiand, Executive Director of the Iowa Women's Foundation, speaks to host Steve Adams about her organization's work to help Iowa's women achieve self-sufficiency through access to quality, affordable childcare. Dawn is a member of the Iowa Afterschool Alliance Strategic Leadership Team.
National Geographic Explorer Classroom: Afterschool Edition

Introduce your afterschool learners to National Geographic Explorers! Join the National Geographic Society for special editions of National Geographic’s Explorer Classroom this fall designed for out-of-school time educators. These Explorer Classroom events are supported by the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation. The live YouTube shows connect young people with cutting-edge scientists, researchers, and powerful storytellers around the world. The events are free and include live Q&A with the Explorers as well as an event guide for your learners to get the most out of the experience.

Learn more and register:
WiFi Hotspots from ITDRC
As the global pandemic continues to affect how we go about our lives, ITDRC is continuing to expand their projectConnect program, installing public WiFi hotspots in rural and underserved communities. They're rapidly approaching 600 installed sites, and have additional capacity to connect more communities.
Interested communities can request a free WiFi hotspot which includes hardware, licensing, and installation by submitting a request through the projectConnect page of the ITDRC website.

The Information Technology Disaster Resource Center, founded in 2008, provides communities with the technical resources needed to continue services and begin recovery after disaster. They are a premier team of volunteer technology professionals.
Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

As planning for the new year and spring semester begin, the Iowa Afterschool Alliance continues to encourage programs to review their lesson plans and activities with an equity, diversity and inclusion lens. To support your lesson and activity planning, please review the Resources to Promote Belonging and Inclusion provided by the Afterschool Alliance, Every Hour Counts and the National AfterSchool Association. The resources compiled include proactive planning, professional development, anti-bias education, state and federal policy, as well as other educational resources.

Access the Resources to Promote Belonging and Inclusion here.
Supporting Young English Learners at Home:
Family and Caregiver Activities

REL West, in partnership with Regional Educational Laboratories (RELs) Northwest and Northeast & Islands, has developed a set of nine activities in English and Spanish that offer simple, fun ideas for how parents, grandparents, and caregivers can help children develop their language skills at home. The activities are based on the What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) practice guide Teaching Academic Content and Literacy to English Learners in Elementary and Middle School.

Grant Opportunities
YSA Afterschool Grants
With generous support from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, YSA will award Afterschool Grants of up to $500 each to support youth-led service or service-learning in afterschool programs. Grants are offered on a competitive application basis and open to any afterschool program in the United States that meets the following requirements:

  • Engage at least 50 youth as volunteers in virtual, hybrid, and/or safe in-person service or service-learning projects between December 2020 – May 2021;

  • Put students' health and safety first by following COVID-related guidelines of federal, state, and local governments;

  • Submit an online impact report by June 30, 2021;

  • Engage a large percentage of youth from underserved communities; and

  • Focus on engaging middle and high-school aged youth.

Activities can take place any time between mid-December and the end of the 2020-2021 school year. We will provide additional planning resources to grantees for MLK Day of Service (January 18, 2021) and/or Global Youth Service Day (April 23-25, 2021); participation in both of these days is optional.

Apply here by December 4, 2020.
Professional Development Opportunities
Beyond School Hours
Join Foundations, Inc. February 17-19, 2021 for Beyond School Hours -- the nation’s most popular education conference is going virtual! Attracting a diverse audience of thousands, from frontline staff and school leaders to philanthropic organizations and the U.S. Department of Education, the Beyond School Hours conference focuses on hands-on, interactive workshops on the topics that matter the most right now.  

In this unique year, the conference theme is RESILIENCE -- with a special focus on preparing children for success, program fundamentals, supporting the support system, and youth engagement.

This year’s virtual conference provides a unique opportunity to extend the learning experience for a full year! After three intensive days of live workshops, the learning will continue with weekly follow-up webinars to help educators across the country keep up with the most current resources and strategies for adapting to our ever-evolving educational landscape.
Out of School Time Professional Development Center
The Out of School Time Professional Development Center provides Out of School Time training to OST professionals. The classes provide in-depth curriculum and certificates. If you or your staff are interested in signing up for courses visit the Out-of-School Time website. Check out the entire course catalog here
Great Content on Y4Y!
You 4 Youth is a free online professional development site that is designed to support 21CCLC program staff, but is a valuable tool for any afterschool professional looking to build their skills! Recently, Y4Y has rolled out a whole module on literacy. Click here to register.
Afterschool Alliance Webinars
The Afterschool Alliance offers webinars on a wide range of topics, from policy and the new Every Student Succeeds Act, to STEM and Social-Emotional Learning. Find out more on their webinars website
Iowa Child Care Training Registry
Find professional development for school-age programming on the State of Iowa Child Care Training Registry on topics ranging from health and safety to developmentally appropriate programming. Find out more online.
National AfterSchool Association PD Resources
NAA provides afterschool professionals with resources to stay up-to-date on the latest topics in afterschool and summer learning.

Find out more on their website here
Resources for STEM Programming
The Center for the Advancement of Informal Science Education (CAISE) provides background information that is useful for the development of STEM programming. Find out more on their website.
The Afterschool Tech Toolkit aims to empower afterschool professionals and educators with strategies and training so they can provide students with access to technology outside of classroom hours. It includes training modules on getting started, training staff, accessing technology and devices, and more. Take a look at the toolkit here.  
BOOST Conference & Online Professional Development
April 27 - April 30, 2021; Palms Springs, CA
Join the largest, most recognized and comprehensive global convening for after school, expanded learning, and out-of-school time professionals. Set in a retreat-like atmosphere, this annual, extraordinary event will rejuvenate your passion, boost your direction for quality programming and provide tools and resources that will inspire you to create change.

Registration opens soon. For more information, visit the conference's website.

BOOST also provides free online professional development. Click here to check it out.