December 2020
Amber Lomascola named an Afterschool Ambassador - Congratulations!
We are excited to announce that Amber Lomascola from Expanding Horizon Youth Center in the Tribal Community Center for Cow Creek Umpqua Tribe of Indians has been chosen as one of this year's Afterschool Ambassador. The Afterschool Alliance's Afterschool Ambassador program identifies afterschool providers and advocates of special achievement and helps them raise their voices in support of afterschool. Ambassadors across the country know firsthand the barriers and benefits that communities face in making afterschool available to all children.

Amber has been working hard the last several years to build an engaging, welcoming program for the Tribal youth in the Myrtle Creek area. We are so proud that Amber is being recognized in this national group of leaders from the field. The video below was made last year to help demonstrate some of her great work in action.
Stories from...Nestucca Valley

Nestucca Valley School District 21st Century Community Learning Center staff have been working hard to deliver afterschool programming this fall. The first quarter of distance learning was a blizzard of activity, foremost on everyone's mind was making sure students in the rural district had access to computers and internet services. Once the school day kinks were worked out, afterschool programming was introduced and continues to brainstorm ways to reach students. They send enrichment links in the meal delivery packets once a week, providing access to virtual museum tours, dance tutorials, and introductions to other cultures.

They are learning that some students are continuing to struggle with the distance learning model and have developed a homework helpline where students can schedule 1:1 time with a tutor to work on homework or key concepts. They plan to keep this model in place in the afterschool program to support students' academic success.

While authentically engaging students is one of trickiest aspects of programming so many are facing, Nestucca Valley is doing their best to provide alternatives to staring at a screen all day. Each week they send home a project kit that allows students to get imaginative and creative, using their minds and hands. They've had Dia De Los Muertos papier mache skulls, gratitude journals and learned about the ancient art of mosaic. 

Keep up the good work Nestucca Valley and thanks for sharing some of your successes!
Word of the Month for Expanded Learning

Inclusion: Not only presence, but involvement and empowerment of diverse persons. See more HERE.

To continue thoughtful discussion on how we use language when discussing expanded learning, equity, and quality, we want to help ensure we have a similar understanding of key terms we are using. Additionally, in light of upcoming CS Education Week and our state of current distance learning, we think it is also important to recognize Digital Inclusion.

Digital Inclusion refers to the activities necessary to ensure that all individuals and communities, including the most disadvantaged, have access to and use of Information and Communication Technologies. Digital Inclusion must evolve as technology advances. Digital Inclusion requires intentional strategies and investments to reduce and eliminate historical, institutional and structural barriers to access and use technology. Read more at NDIA about the 5 elements digital inclusion must include.
Computer Science Education Week
December 7th - 13th, 2020
Computer Science Education Week (CSEdWeek) is an annual call to action to inspire K-12 students to learn computer science, advocate for equity in computer science education, and celebrate the contributions of students, teachers, and partners to the field. As part of the #CSforGood movement this year CSED is proud to elevate #CSforSocialJustice. To view the week's events calendar and to register, click HERE.

In addition, Hour of Code is hosting their annual coding event. The Hour of Code started as a one-hour introduction to computer science, designed to demystify "code", to show that anybody can learn the basics, and to broaden participation in the field of computer science. It has since become a worldwide effort to celebrate computer science, starting with 1-hour coding activities but expanding to all sorts of community efforts. Check out the tutorials and activities. This grassroots campaign is supported by over 400 partners and 200,000 educators worldwide. Register HERE.
OregonASK Conference Fall 2020 Recap HERE
Check out this brief overview of this year's virtual Oregon Afterschool Conference.
Upcoming Training Opportunities

FREE Learning About COVID-19 Activity Guide Training
This training will be an overview of the Learning About COVID-19 Activity Guide. These 40 activities were intentionally designed to teach students the science behind COVID-19 and to help foster greater social awareness and empathy. Set 1 Learning Environments Curriculum (CKC)

Tuesday, December 15th from 6-7:00pm – Register Here
Tuesday, December 16th from 9-10:00am – Register Here

FREE Engineering Design Challenges Webinar Series by Technovation
This webinar series is designed for program staff (directors, STEM specialists, and facilitators) working with kids in 4th–8th grades. Feel like an expert in leading engineering design challenges online that help students develop engineering mindsets while being part of a supportive learning community. If you are looking for a way to step up your STEAM game in a fun and active way with your kids, this is for you. Help kids think like engineers as they build solutions to any sort of problem!

The final session of this virtual hands-on training is on December 10th.
REGISTER HERE to take this FREE training December 10th from 12-1pm PST.
Updates on National & State Policy

Bipartisan legislation introduced in November, calls for an additional $1.2 billion for the 21st Century after-school programs that serve students across the nation, particularly in low-income areas. It’s possible the bill could become part of a COVID relief package or an omnibus spending bill, according to the Afterschool Alliance.

The 21st Century Community Learning Centers Coronavirus Relief Act of 2020 (S. 4868) would allow programs to expand to serve more kids. Programs would gain flexibility — including being able to operate during the daytime, not just in the afternoon — to provide a supportive environment when schools are closed and students must learn remotely. “The 21st Century Program fills a crucial need for families during these unprecedented times,” said Michele Stockwell, executive director of Bipartisan Policy Center Action, in an email. It will help parents get the child care they need and help children get the consistent academic assistance they need to thrive, she said. CLICK HERE to take action now.

Governor Brown's Budget proposal for 2021-2023 was released today and includes several tough cuts along with optimistic outlooks for most education related programs. You can find the first 80 pages that include education and human services HERE.
Keeping Safe While Cases Rise; Updated Guidance for Some

While it has been shared that child care and schools are not being impacted by the current statewide 'freeze', please note that there are special regulations for Youth Programs below.

Additional update and guidance is also expected soon from the Early Learning Division for Emergency Child Care Providers. Find Updates HERE or contact the Office of Child Care by phone, 1-800-342-6712 or by emailing
Afterschool Wellness Award Now Open

The Oregon Department of Education, the Nutrition Council of Oregon, the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council, and OregonASK are teaming up to reward exemplary School & Afterschool Programs for creating and sustaining a culture of wellness for youth and staff. With consideration to the current circumstances, this years’ wellness award committee has chosen to simplify the application, the process should take between 1-3 hours.

Afterschool Wellness Recipients will receive statewide recognition, a personalized plaque, and a custom banner, as well as a $1,000 award to be used to further nutrition, physical activity and/or other wellness efforts within their program. Looking forward to having afterschool programs recognized for the amazing work they have been doing!

Register HERE for applicant webinar Monday, December 14, 2020, 10:30AM - 11:00AM
Application Deadline: February 1, 2021
Tis the Season for Self-Care

We know not seeing loved ones during the holidays can create anxiety and strong emotions. Here is a link to a short summary about travel and gathering rules throughout this holiday season.

And in an effort to share a little joy and inspiration in the face of tiring times, we hope that this song might help relieve some of your stress.
2020-21 Save the Dates!

December 4th: OregonASK Partner Meeting RSVP HERE  

December 7th-9th: Oregon Legislative Days

January 19th, 2021: Oregon State Legislative Session Starts

February 19, 2021: OregonASK Partner Meeting

May 14, 2021: OregonASK Partner Meeting
OregonASK Expanded Learning Partnership
Wilsonville, OR 97070