January 2021
Start of the new year with more Equitable Opportunities
Building Relationships in Expanded Learning to help Inspire, Equip & Engage Youth
Word of the Month for Expanded Learning

January is National Mentoring Month and a perfect opportunity to consider how expanded learning partners provide critical connection points for youth across Oregon. When we think about building positive relationships, mentor opportunities can be an ideal experience for mentors and mentees alike.

Mentoring: A developmental relationship in which a more experienced or more knowledgeable person offers a less experienced or less knowledgeable person guidance, support, and encouragement in order to help them develop in a specified capacity. To explore some of the similarities and differences between mentoring, training, coaching, and consulting, click HERE.
Stories from Curry Public Library ASCEND Program
Since this spring, the Curry Public Library has been working hard to meet the unique needs of their community in Gold Beach. As a current 21st Century Community Learning Center, the Library's ASCEND program has been tasked with supporting youth academically while providing enriching opportunities and family engagement supports. Throughout COVID-19 school closures and varied regulations, day to day activities have certainly looked a bit different than planned but the goals remain the same.

Throughout the spring and summer, ASCEND organized activity material kits to go out with the food delivery they did twice a week. By the middle summer, they knew youth would need more than material support to be prepared and engaged in distance learning. The Curry Public Library reached out to local individuals and several regional foundations to gather funding that would support full-time, all day programming for more than 25 youth from the community. They coordinated with the district to have additional aid on site to support individual education plans, they also provided food and transportation when possible.

Curry Public Library is committed to providing the necessary support to help youth be successful, particularly during this difficult time of distance learning. They have continued to look for local, regional, and state funding that can keep their ASCEND program operating at the level needed to serve their community.
Thinking About Training in the New Year?

Learning About COVID-19 Activity Guide
January 26th from 6-7pm Register HERE for FREE
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. One hour of Set 1 Learning Environments Curriculum (LEC) credit available

Advocacy 102: Understanding the Case for Expanded Learning
January 27th from 10-11am RSVP HERE
We welcome partners from across the state to join us as we discuss strategy and opportunities for helping keeping our decision makers, both statewide and locally, well informed about the power of afterschool and the key role that expanded learning partners will play in helping youth and families continue to manage through the coming year of trials.

Leap into Science Light & Shadows Virtual Training
February 17th from 6-8pm REGISTER HERE for FREE
March 3rd from 10am-12pm REGISTER HERE for FREE
This training prepares educators to host Leap into Science: Light and Shadow workshops for children 3-10 and their families. This training introduces educators to the two workshops for children, as well as strategies for facilitating science and literacy learning in family workshops. Educators will practice facilitation techniques, and explore resources to lead Leap into Science programs. Participants will earn 2 hours of Set 2 Learning Environments Curriculum (LEC) through Oregon Center for Career Development at PSU.
National Training, Resources, and Opportunities
Q&A with NASA astronauts on International Space Station January 7th

Register Here to join Expedition 64 astronauts Kate Rubins and Shannon Walker answer questions from youth around the country. Make sure to sign up to receive connection details for one of the two (or both) of the sessions. Looking to extend STEM learning?

Check out NASA’s “Design a Crew Module” activity in the Mizzen by Mott app. Students will use engineering design principles to build a crew module model that can secure two 2cm miniature astronauts during a drop test! Or check out NASA’s “Habitat Planning”, an activity that combines astronomy and creativity with design. Students think about and discuss what astronauts need to live on the moon — and draw their own habitat. Get the App HERE!

Join National Girls Collaborative in Celebrating National Mentoring Month

EngineerGirl Ambassadors: Empowering High-Schoolers and Inspiring Young Girls
January 12th at 3:00 PM
Participants will learn more about the EngineerGirl Ambassadors program and hear from high-school Ambassador, Faye Liu, and her sponsor, Crista Riccio, as they share their experiences with the program. Register HERE

Reach Across the Stars: Meet Your Female Space & Science Heroes (virtually!)
January 27th at 11:00 AM
Virtually "meet" women who have blazed trails in space and related science fields and celebrate National Mentoring Month by learning more about the achievements of women in STEM. Register Here

This webinar will consist of a panel with STEM professionals and scientists who are featured in a free augmented reality (AR) app designed to allow users to explore the universe and unlock the often-overlooked stories of women and their contributions to space exploration and science.

You can also access a plethora of Equitable STEM Webinars from the NGC Archive
Microscope girl
Updates on State & National Policy

Oregon's Special Session Review from December
School Liability Limitation Law Passed to encourage more schools to reopen without facing extraneous lawsuit liability related to COVID-19. Review some key points HERE. Keep an eye out for an opportunity to share questions and concerns with state officials this January related to school reopening procedures and building usage under this new law.

Big changes to school reopening metrics now allow the measures of local community spread of COVID-19 to be advisory rather than mandatory, effective January 1, 2021. The objective is to ensure that decisions to resume in-person instruction be made locally, and on a school-by-school basis. The Governor has directed the Oregon Department of Education and the Oregon Health Authority to implement this along with several new initiatives to help schools reopen across the state by the middle of February 2021.

Protection for Renters is not automatic. The moratorium on evictions in Oregon was extended until June 30, 2021. However, renters must complete, sign, and return a form to their landlord to prevent eviction. The form(s) will be posted in January online HERE.

Congress finally passed, and the President signed, a new COVID relief package late in December. While the funding will not get us to recovered, it brings much needed assistance to Oregon’s families and small businesses. Here is a summary of the relief package from National Conference of State Legislatures or find out more about how funding will be allocated to the state HERE.
  • $284 billion for business loans through the Paycheck Protection Program
  • $600 per person direct payments for Oregonians with incomes below $75,000 for an individual or $150,000 for a household
  • $300 boost in supplemental federal unemployment benefits for next 11 weeks
  • Continuation of the special unemployment benefits for gig workers and people who are self-employed
  • $82 billion for colleges and schools
  • $7 billion for rural broadband
  • $13 billion for food assistance programs
  • $25 billion in rental assistance
Raising Voices of Youth

Oregon Students United is hosting their First Annual Leadership Summit, co-hosted by Oregon Association of Student Councils (OASC), REAP, Inc, Oregon Association of Secondary School Administrators (OASSA), Coalition of Oregon School Administrators (COSA), and the Oregon Department of Education (ODE). Register HERE for the January 14th event!

January 14th from 4:30-6pm, help fill the summit with:
  • Oregon students between the ages of 12 - 21. Particularly, students of color and underserved youth including those who are: 
  • LGBTQ2SIA+ students, students with disabilities, students who experience multiple marginalizations and students who feel underserved by our current educational system; as well as
  • Youth from all parts of our state, especially students from rural and coastal communities.
  • Educators of all sorts, please feel free to share with peers or administrators who would be interested in attending. 
  • And any community partners serving youth and families are also welcome
Afterschool Wellness Award Now Open

Congratulations to the first ever Oregon Afterschool Wellness Award winner of 2020, Boys & Girls Club of Salem-Knudson Branch. In an effort to continue creating and sustaining a culture of wellness for youth and staff, the Oregon Department of Education, the Nutrition Council of Oregon, the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council, and OregonASK have teamed up to reward exemplary Afterschool Programs. 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!

Find a PDF of application requirements HERE and Apply HERE by February 1st, 2021
National Grant Opportunity

The New York Life Foundation is seeking applications from afterschool, summer, or expanded learning programs serving underserved middle-school youth. There are 3 grant categories that will be awarded to 26 different programs based on the size and budget of your program:
  • $100,000 Level: Eight (8) grants of $50,000 per year over the span of two years (for a total award of $100,000) will go to OST programs with annual program budgets of $250,000 or more and annual organizational budgets of $500,000 or more.
  • $50,000 Level: Eight (8) grants of $25,000 per year over the span of two years will go to OST programs with annual organizational budgets of $250,000 or more.
  • $15,000 Level: Ten (10) awards of $15,000 over one year will go to OST programs with annual organizational budgets of $150,000 or more with a focus on supporting programs in their efforts around advancing racial equity and social justice.
Read the full application and eligibility requirements HERE. Applications are due February 1, 2021 at 2pm PST.
Celebrate the New Year with Self Care

As we continue our efforts in empowering youth, it is important to acknowledge the barriers and hardships we have collectively faced in the last year. We hope taking a moment to listen to this song will instill feelings of hope and new possibilities that 2021 may bring.
2021 Save the Dates!

January 14th: Oregon Students United First Annual Leadership Summit

January 18th: Martin Luther King Jr Day & Day of Service

January 19th: Oregon State Legislative Session Starts

January 20th: Oregon Access & Equity Advisory Meeting

January 27th: Advocacy 102 Discussion (RSVP to OregonASK)

February 19th: OregonASK Partner Meeting

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