May  2019 Newsletter
Supporting School and Community Partnerships

Over the past six months, OregonASK has been visiting afterschool programs around the state as part of our Access and Equity research project. Earlier this month, we took a road trip through Central Oregon, visiting programs all along the way. One of those programs was Bend Parks and Recreation, who runs an afterschool program in nearly every single elementary school throughout Bend.

The Bend Parks and Recreation afterschool program, called Kids Inc. is an instrumental part of the Bend community. They strive to be a leader in their community, connected to nature, supporting active lifestyles, and the community as a whole. They believe in providing a safe space for kids to be creative, build skills like problem solving and team work, and give parents peace of mind. Parents whose kids are part of the afterschool program recognize the value of the program and how impactful it is for the whole community. While the program emphasis is certainly on enrichment and learning through play, it is clear they understand the importance of supporting the whole child through development of positive relationships with each child. Even walking into one of their many sites as a new observer, we could instantly sense how at home the kids feel. Judging by the sheer number of students happily served by Kids Inc., it's clear that Bend Parks and Recreation District is serving a big need of afterschool in the community.   

This is just one story of a program supporting school & community partnerships. Check out our video created by MetroEast Community Media to document Farmworker Housing Development Corporations successful partnerships. If you are interested in sharing your story, please contact Bethany Thramer for more information about opportunities to share. 
Charting A Course For Success  

OregonASK is honored to bring several national guests to Oregon to share firsthand about the coordinated, national plan that is guiding STEM education efforts across the country, including the design and priorities for funding from federal agencies going forward.  "Charting a Course for Success: America's STEM Education Strategy" is the new 5-year federal STEM education strategic plan released in December 2018. Within the plan, they outline 4 main pathways for achieving 3 aspirational goals in coordination with 18 federal agencies. We are excited to use these findings and strategies to share with Oregon stakeholders how afterschool and summer programs help build foundational skills and help spark an interest in STEM careers, address equity by reaching high need populations, and engage youth in computer science. 

This week, we are excited to bring national and local partners together to discuss aligning Oregons work with federal efforts, increasing industry and community partnerships, supporting school improvement through expanded learning, and prioritizing workforce readiness skills. On May 2nd, we will be at the Oregon State Capitol to meet with legislators to discuss statewide opportunities for supporting collaborative efforts. We will also showcase some of what Oregon has to offer with a tour of CTEC high school in Salem. On May 3rd, i n collaboration with Clackamas Workforce Partnership, we're excited to be co-hosting the Youth Career Readiness Summit: Charting a Course for Clackamas to support county-wide efforts for building a comprehensive system for equipping work-ready youth . We are thankful to the Overdeck Family Foundation for funding this work and our local partners that we couldn't have done this without. If you are interested in learning more about these efforts, contact Bethany Thramer .
Best Wishes on Susan's Next Adventure

After more than 5 years working at OregonASK, we say a heartfelt bon voyage to our own Susan Zundel as she sets out on her next adventure. Coming to us during her year as Oregon PTA President, Susan has been an integral part of our team, spearheading quality and evaluation for the last several years. We are so thankful for her years of work supporting programs, connecting Early Learning quality improvement systems, leading of countless trainings, and so much more (like bringing Adventure Jo to life for OAC 2017). 

During her time with OregonASK, Susan has contributed in so many ways, including but not limited to: facilitating PTA Family Science Nights, building a system for school age QRIS (Quality Rating Improvement Systems), evaluating nearly a dozen afterschool providers (some annually), managed comprehensive evaluative report of City of McMinnville's Kids on the Block program, become the only trainer in Oregon, led Train-the-Trainer for TALE (Training for Afterschool Literacy Education), created a PBIS for Afterschool Handbook, connected local providers with national micro-credentialing, facilitated program management cohorts, traveled Oregon for a training Roadshow, and led efforts in OregonASK's most recent Quality Standards for Afterschool & Summer Programs revision.  We wish her well and we know she'll continue to do great, innovative work in the future.
How the Joint Committee on Student Success Could Impact Funding for Youth Programs

The Joint Committee of Student Success has spent months working to understand all the variables that are impacting student success in Oregon. From the last 2 years of work, they have created a bill that includes increasing mental health support, safer schools, access to nutritious food, summer programming, and broadening access to engaging educational opportunities all rolled into the $2 billion Student Success Package. 

This bill would be funded by a new business tax that would bring in $2 billion per biennium,  however, it will only effect business bringing in at least $1 million annually. Read more about how the Student Success package is doing here According to Rep. Diego Hernandez, D-Portland, "The Student Success Act fulfills a promise decades in the making. As someone who is a product of Oregon Public Schools, it's personal to me." 
Access and Equity Survey & Focus Groups

The team at OregonASK has been traveling all over Oregon to gather data that really depicts what afterschool looks like across the State and understanding what the unique barriers are in different parts of the State. This past month, we went all over Central Oregon visiting programs and holding youth and community focus groups in Bend, Redmond, Madras, Prineville, 
Burns and Crane. 

We've received so much useful information over the last few months from all over the state of Oregon! Thanks to all the youth, family and communities that helped inform this project as well as the OregonASK Data Design Team that helped the design of this project. After months of data collection we've developed an interim report of the findings! Read the report here! Before we finalize the report, make sure your voice is captured! 

If you are interested in having your program represented in this work, sharing the voic e of your youth, and telling about the impact you've made, please make sure to take one of our survey's;  the  Program Management  or  Site Staff Survey.  You can also find out more about our  Afterschool Access & Equity  tools  or contact Juan Soto about sharing a youth survey  with your 4th-12th grade students.

THANK YOU to all who have participated! We hope this data will help grow resources so more programs can reach the youth and families who need quality expanded learning opportunities. 
Join Zero Robotics Summer Cohort!

OregonASK has been supporting Oregon programs participation in Zero Robotics since 2015, fostering and increasing middle school youth exposure to computer programming that includes live interaction with astronauts on the International Space Station! 

This innovative and inspiring summer program introduces students to computer programming, robotics, and space engineering. It provides hands-on experience in programming SPHERES (Synchronized Position Hold Engage and Reorient Experimental Satellites). It is not too late to Register Now or reach out to  Bernard Rahming  with questions.
2019 Summer Meals in Oregon

May is officially here and it won't be long until families and kids are outside looking for fun, healthy things to do. Help spread the word about free summer meals for anyone 18 years and younger at sites all over Oregon. No paperwork is required, just show up and receive a delicious meal served in community parks, schools and faith based centers. 

To find a Summer Meal Site near you click here, text  "Summer Meals" to 97779  or  call 1-866-348-6479 Click here  i f interested in learning more about Summer Meals across Oregon or if  you're interested in being a Summer Meal Sponsor email ODE Community Nutrition  or call 503-947-5894.  The deadline for applications is May 15th so make sure to click here if you are interested in learning more about becoming a Summer Meal Site this summer.
Jumping into Summer!

Spread the Word
The weather is getting warmer and the days are getting longer, summer is only one more month away! This year,  National Summer Learning Association (NSLA)  has dedicated an entire week to raising awareness and advocating for the importance of summer learning opportunities. We hope you are also able to help tell your story about how you keep kids safe, healthy and ready to return to next school year ready to learn.  Find more ideas here about activities to help celebrate National Summer Learning Week, July 8th-13th . You can also c heck out NSLA's program toolkit to find #SmartSummersChallenges, theme days for each day of the week, and how to promote your celebration on social media!

Summer Opportunities
New Summer SuperQuest Event ! SuperQuest workshops are a chance to spend three days learning new curriculum and pedagogy to bring back to your program! All the workshops involve hands-on learning with classroom tested material designed to be directly implemented.  Register Now for the Oregon Computer Science Teacher Association (OCSTA) 3 day, teacher led workshop that'll provide 21 hours of professional development!

Saturday Academy

Saturday Academy  has officially opened registration for their classes & camps in the Portland Metro area for summer 2019. You are welcome to share their catalogue of opportunities with youth and families to ensure that classes are filled with enthusiastically curious students! The  online catalogue of all summer opportunities  includes information about class and camp times, locations, and financial assistance. You can find additional information on their  Facebook  and  Twitter  or contact  Heidi Venneri  with questions. 
OregonASK VISTA Highlight

The Afterschool Alliance has just released a Program Spotlight  that highlights OregonASK's commitment to utilize AmeriCorps VISTAs in supporting expanded learning in Oregon. We are so happy to continue our relationship with national and state partners that make this work as fruitful as possible. Thank you to all those who have served as VISTA's and to our partners who continue to provide knowledge and guidance for these growing, passionate individuals. 

Additionally, OregonASK is still looking for a  dedicated and driven professional looking to be part of our team to make an impact in Oregon communities. It is a full time, one year position: 
My Brother's Keeper VISTA  OregonASK will develop strong links to communities of color, community partners (community colleges/universities and workforce boards) and after school and summer learning programs to increase access to high-quality educational, enrichment and mentoring opportunities for youth of color.  To see more or apply for this position  click here .
2019 Save the Dates!
May 3rd - Charting A Course For Success
May 10th - OregonASK Partner Meeting
June 11th-12th- Afterschool for All Challenge
July 8th-13th-  National Summer Learning Week

October 11th-  OregonASK Partner Meeting

October 24th- Lights On Afterschool 
November 2nd - Oregon Afterschool Conference "Quest for Quality"

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