September 2018 Newsletter
Oregon Afterschool Conference Register By September 15th for Early Bird Rate! 

Express Yourself! This years conference will give providers an opportunity to explore and  build skills, particularly within the realm of social-emotional development and supporting youth voice.  Afterschool & summer programs are uniquely positioned to help youth apply knowledge, explore new subjects and build self-confidence without fear of failure.   As more and more schools and partners around Oregon implement various social-emotional initiatives, we wanted to take this opportunity to  capitalize on the unique ability of expanded learning partners to reach youth in an informal setting while helping them build essential skills, everything from communication to coping with stress. Whether you have a formal structure or content focus, informal learning programs are inherently designed to help youth learn as they explore and express their interests and curiosities.  

Problem Solving + Creative Expression = Impactful Learning

Several of the sessions this year will focus on self expression and building essential skills. 
  • Creating Inclusive learning Environments for Gender Variant Youth
  • The Power of Peace Words
  • PBIS Basics for Afterschool Providers
  • Workforce Readiness Skills for All Students in a Global Economy 
  • Cultural Proficiency vs. Cultural Competency
  • Brain Development, Mindfulness & Kids
  • Inclusionary Practices for Students on the Spectrum I

Click Here to Register Now. Don't miss your chance to register for the Oregon Afterschool Conference at our Early Bird Rate of $89 by September 15th!

OAC 2018 Workshop Highlight

'You know that we've been doing something wrong when we are consistently observing what looks like the symptoms of trauma in and around mathematics. If we are addressing aversion, anxiety, feelings of insecurity and fears of incompetence, we are only addressing the symptoms of the trauma. We have to be conscious and proactive about reframing mathematics education as trauma-informed, responsive, and holistic - not to be confined to math classrooms, but to be used as a tool to make sense of the world around us.' 

Colin Crane-Smith was born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he developed a deep dislike of school, math class in particular. After high school, he briefly attended college in New Mexico but dropped out and moved to the Pacific Northwest. He worked a series of jobs in thrift stores, restaurant kitchens and cheese shops before attending Portland Community College and Portland State University. In a somewhat unlikely twist, Colin changed his intended major from History to Mathematics after taking a calculus course at the urging of a friend. He began working in enrichment programs in 2012 and worked for Beach School, Self Enhancement Inc., and Airway Science for Kids, Inc.  Colin taught Physics and Calculus at De La Salle North Catholic in Portland last year and is now a high school math teacher and student advocate at Open School East. Outside of his career as an educator, Colin enjoys reading, playing guitar, fishing and spending his free time with his fiancee. 

At the Oregon Afterschool Conference on November 3rd, Colin will be facilitating a Make Teaching & Learning Math Fun workshop that will explore common themes in math education and examine how we can change our own mindsets and approaches to minimize the trauma associated with math. Don't miss the early bird rate - register here by September 15th.

Participate in Lights On Afterschool!

Join more than
8,000 communities and 1 million Americans in celebrating afterschool programs for this year's 
Lights On Afterschool!  This nationwide event, organized by the Afterschool Alliance, calls attention to the importance of afterschool programs and the resources required to keep the lights on and the doors open. OregonASK  is proud to be a 
Lights On Afterschool partner .
Too many American children-19.4 million-are missing out on afterschool opportunities. Participate in Lights On Afterschool and help call attention to this important issue.
To learn more about Lights On Afterschool, register an event, access event planning tools, or to find out what's going on in your area on October 25th, visit .  Those who register will receive free  Lights On Afterschool  posters to help promote their event, and their events will be promoted to media and the public by the Afterschool Alliance.   Lights On Afterschool  is a project of the Afterschool Alliance, a nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring that all children have access to afterschool programs.
Back to Afterschool, Attendance Matters

With kids back in school, it's now time for afterschool programs to start up as well. Afterschool programs provide more than a place for kids to go between 3-6pm. They provide safe environments with mentors that encourage students to not just show up to school but be actively engaged in the classroom. 

These positive role models in afterschool are helping combat chronic absenteeism in a multitude of ways. Playworks, for example, is using their  recess lab to highlight the power of play, teaching kids to make friends, resolve conflicts, and become leaders. 

To find out how to help celebrate Attendance Awareness Month and make a difference in chronic absenteeism go to Attendance Works.  
Hot off the Press: Nationwide Chronic Absenteeism
Attendance Works and the Everyone Graduates Center just released their new September brief,  Data Matters: Using Chronic Absence to Accelerate Action for Student Success. This analysis brings to attention that 8 million students (1 in every 7 student) were chronically absent Nationwide. This report also brings to light data from different states and widely varied results of absenteeism and the various tools available to schools, districts and community members that are interested in developing solutions specific to their communities. Afterschool and summer programs are an effective tool used by communities around the country.
New Summer Learning Bill Introduced to Congress

On July 31, Sens. Wyden (D-Oregon), Merkley (D-Oregon), and Blumenthal (D-Conn.) introduced the  Summer Learning and Meals Act of 2018 (S. 3307.)  T he new legislation aims to help close the summer learning gap by keeping school libraries open at schools that already serve free summer meals. The legislation is based on  OregonASK's Summer Learning Partnership , a successful state-based pilot program coordinated in part by OregonASK

The Summer Learning and Meals Act of 2018 would create a new federal grant program that provides grants to state libraries to allow schools with summer lunch programs to keep their libraries open for student use during the summer months. Specifically the new grant program established by the Summer Learning and Meals Act would:
  • Be run by the federal Department of Education;
  • Provide grants to state libraries to fund summer reading programs at schools that:
    • Have a summer lunch program 
    • Where at least 50 percent of students read below grade level or are at risk of reading below grade levels;
  • Enable state library programs to award sub-grants based on the proposed number of school lunch sites and the number of students that will be served under the summer early reading program;
  • Require agencies receiving grants to submit yearly reports regarding the progress made in achieving the purposes of the grant or sub-grant to the Secretary;
  • Be authorized at $5 million in funding for each of the fiscal years 2019 through 2023

Go to the Afterschool Alliance Federal Bill Tracker to stay up to date on its progress.

Policy Update on Student Success Committee

New information released straight from the Desk of the Co-Chairs of the Joint Committee on Student Success, highlights several categories of feedback they have heard, including: 
  • Smart investments in early childhood education are critical to the long-term success
  • Schools  are the center of our community, and they need wrap around resources that help students cope with hardships and focus on school
  • Students must see a clear path to their future, whether college or career
Although afterschool and summer resources were not specifically listed, we know what a critical piece community partners and expanded learning providers play in these area. We hope you will continue to help us let legislators hear about the important role we each play in supporting youth and families throughout Oregon. The final stops in their listening tour are listed below. If you are able to attend, please contact for a testimonial template or talking points to help amplify our unified message. 

Public Hearings normally have sign in 6:30 pm with testimony 7-9 pm
  • September 13th, Ridgeview High School, 
    4555 SW Elkhorn Ave,
  • September 25th, Oregon Legislature @ 5:30pm
  • September 27th, James Madison High School, 2735 NE 82nd Ave, Portland
  • October 10, Marshfield High School, 972 Ingersoll Ave, Coos Bay
You can follow the Committee on Facebook and Twitter as they reflect on each stop of the statewide tour. 
Access and Equity Survey & Focus Groups

OregonASK is continuing our work collecting data from across the state around issues of Equity and Access within Afterschool programs in Oregon. Last spring, we unveiled several survey tools to collect quantitative data, and this fall, we will be adding focus groups/forums with youth and families to gather more qualitative stories. 

We look forward to hearing about why youth attend afterschool programs, the impact participation in afterschool has, and how programs are helping youth prepare for their futures. Equally important, we will hear about barriers to participating and  how to make programs more appealing and accessible. 

If you are an afterschool program manager, director, or coordinator, now is the time for you to take our  If you are interested in hosting or participating in a Focus Group, please  c ontact  Juan Soto

We are so grateful for all who helped provide information on how to better serve youth in our communities. We hope you will help to share how real the need is to support equitable opportunities for all youth in Oregon! 
Upcoming Training Opportunities 

This is a national program that integrates open-ended science activities with children's books,
designed for children ages 3-10 and their families. This training provides techniques and strategies for engaging youth and their families within an accessible and familiar setting and includes a kit of materials.  Register below or c ontact  Rachel Kessler  with questions.
September 14th & 15th in  Southern Oregon
September 20th at Beaverton City Library - Register by Sept 6 

Partner Updates
The Digital Health Collaborative (DHC) is hosting a  Free one day workshop for Middle and High School Educators that have an interest in DNA, genetics, hands on science for kids and much more. The workshop is on  October 6th, 2018 from 8:45 am - 3:13 pm. Find out more and Register for the workshop  Here .

Meet Our New Trainer!

We'd like to introduce our new trainer, Kassy Rousselle. She's our Health and Wellness VISTA who joined us last November. Her primary focus will be tailored towards professional development of Health, Safety, and Nutrition. She graduated from Central Washington University with a degree in Food Science and Nutrition.

She's excited to use her background knowledge in nutrition to develop trainings for OregonASK and continue supporting Health and Wellness work, including development of resources such as: Get Fit & Healthy Toolkit and Tips for Staying Healthy

Read more on OregonASK training opportunities here .
Debate for Oregon's Future on October 2nd

Children First for Oregon, KOIN 6, and Pamplin Media Group are organizing a debate for governor candidates. This first-of-its-kind debate where children and youth will be asking 100% of the questions, gives children and youth the opportunity to hold the candidates accountable for the issues that matter to them the most. You can join in one of several ways:
  • Tune into your local KOIN affiliate from 7-8 pm to watch LIVE!
  • Youth who want to participate in the event can submit their questions online or send a video with their question (up to 30 seconds) to
  • Adults can nominate a youth to ask a question at the event.
  • Follow the #Debate4ORFuture hashtag on social media and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for updates and to view video submissions from youth.
  • Tell your friends and family!

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