The Y4Y Insider
A Month Fit For Neither Man Nor Beast
February 2020
Upcoming Y4Y Showcase Webinar

Expanding Quality Health and Recreation Opportunities
Thursday, March 12, 1-2:30 p.m. ET

How can you incorporate health and fitness into your 21 st CCLC program to maximize student engagement and excitement? Join the U.S. Department of Education’s You for Youth (Y4Y) Technical Assistance (TA) Team as they share ideas for creating and implementing heart-pumping activities. Learn how to integrate state and national standards, establish new partnerships, and train frontline staff with student wellness in mind. For inspiration, this Showcase will also highlight 21 st CCLC programs that demonstrate best practices for recreation and health education. Register here .
A Month Fit For Neither Man Nor Beast
As the winter wears on, remember: Y4Y is here to support you as you shelter students from unfavorable conditions. It may be a jungle out there for students who’ve experienced trauma, but your 21 st  CCLC program may be the perfect environment to offer safety and best practices for building resilience . Looking for something to do while you're stuck inside? As announced earlier this month, Y4Y now offers two brand-new courses: Creating a Positive Learning Environment and Social and Emotional Learning . Did you know Congress recently honored an early advocate of afterschool programs like yours by renaming the federal program? It’s now the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers Grant Program .
Archived Virtual Series
Creative Program Ideas
March 3 is World Wildlife Day. See the World Wildlife Fund for ideas on getting involved in protecting wildlife, or consider citizen science projects that advance the study of wildlife.
F ollow the world-famous Iditerod sled dog race, which starts on March 7 . Students can learn about geography, navigation, history and perseverance as they track the race in real time.
March 14 is Pi Day (3.14)! Geometry gets easier when you realize pi is about the relationship that every circle’s diameter has with its own circumference. 
Celebrate World Poetry Day on March 21 . Does it have to rhyme all the time, or can we just paint a picture with words? 
Tech Tip: Navigating the Y4Y Website

In this continuing series, the Insider walks you through the “Learn” tab at Y4Y.ed.gov . If the Y4Y site were a hamburger, the Learn tab would be its meat patty. The Y4Y learning meat patty has three dimensions: topic, level and form.

Y4Y “topics” touch on issues that matter to nearly all 21 st CCLC programs. These topics vary widely, from Introduction to 21 st CCLC to Trauma-Informed Care to Financial Literacy and everything in between. Really, firsthand exploration of the Y4Y website is necessary to appreciate its dozens of topic/subject areas.

Y4Y “levels” of resources under the Learn tab range from exposure to or introduction of a topic, all the way up to management-level implementation and staff training. In between these lowest and highest levels of learning, a Y4Y user will discover resources appropriate for entry-level interactive understanding, and more advanced, interactive training (with Y4Y certificates of completion available at various levels in different topics).

Y4Y learning across various topics and levels comes in many “forms,” including these:
  • Blogs: Searchable by dozens of categories in the left panel of the blog landing page, Y4Y blog posts are introduced monthly in the Insider. They offer synopses of Y4Y resources, windows onto best practices, ideas for linking 21st CCLC programming with trends in education, and more. Like Click & Go’s, the blog is informational but not interactive.
  • Click & Go’s: Y4Y’s microlearning opportunities are online packets of mini-lessons, short podcasts and relevant tools. While Click & Go’s offer varying depth of material on several topics, these resources are for exposure to subjects. They are a great resource for the learner who has restricted time for professional development.
  • Courses: Beyond Click and Go’s, these are interactive learning experiences on the fundamentals of 21st CCLC program development and success, and offer certificates of completion. Among the courses, you’ll find both introductory- and advanced-level interactive learning, with tools you can use right away to improve your practice.
  • Discussion Board: Community forums established around Y4Y virtual experiences allow learners to engage with their peers or to pose questions directly to technical assistance experts. Depth of discussion is entirely up to our communities, though any learning in this forum is informal.
  • Implementation Guides: These guides (some are aptly titled “toolkits”) are packets that combine information, ideas and resources on select topics.
  • Train Your Staff: Whereas other forms of learning materials are geared toward the individual learner, Y4Y’s “Train Your Staff” resources aid program directors in bringing frontline staff up to speed. Not only will you find a “Coaching My Staff” element to each course, but look, also, for customizable Y4Y tools and “Trainings To Go,” which are downloadable training presentations on a whole host of topics.
  • Webinars: Sign up to attend live webinars with an opportunity to interactively pose questions, or choose from several years of archived webinars on a wide variety of topics and levels of professional development.

Next month, the Insider will break down the “Resources” tab.
State Coordinators Corner

The Department's Y4Y TA Team looks forward to connecting with both new professionals and seasoned veterans of 21 st CCLC programs at the upcoming National AfterSchool Association Convention. We hope to see you and your grantees at our sessions, described below.


Y4Y at National AfterSchool Association (NAA) Convention 2020
March 15-18, Washington, D.C.

We’d like to reserve your seat at the table! Let us know if you can make these Y4Y NAA sessions.


Finding and Keeping Your Most Important Assets: Human Resources March 16, 8 a.m. ET
Do you have trouble finding qualified staff? Puzzled by a high rate of staff turnover? Feel uncertain about your interviewing skills? These challenges are not uncommon, even among the best out-of-school time programs. This 60-minute session will help you develop knowledge and strategies for finding and retaining effective staff members. You’ll practice a scenario-based interviewing approach, learn about effective on-the-job communication, and consider ways to embed positivity and encourage intrinsic motivation in all you do.

Safety Training Plan — Are You Prepared?
March 17, 3:45 p.m. ET
Are your program staff clear on roles and expectations during various emergencies? Are program students and families aware of and ready to implement set safety procedures? This 30-minute workshop will help program directors, site coordinators and other program leadership implement and revise existing organizational safety plans to meet the needs of your program. Learn about building your program’s capacity to respond effectively to emergencies. We will provide strategies for implementing your safety plan and safety training plan in ways that are sensitive to the emotional and mental health needs of children, staff and families.


Voices From
the Field

 An Interview With Erin Busk, 21 st CCLC Grant Specialist, Indiana

Last fall, the Department's Y4Y TA Team caught up with Ms. Busk to ask what it’s like to work with diverse 21 st CCLC program grantees, including a large number of community-based and faith-based organizations (CBOs and FBOs). The State Coordinators Corner in December’s Insider shared her tips for state coordinators on making the most of state grantee conferences. She also shared the following insights, which are relevant to practitioners working at the program and site levels. For the full interview , complete with exciting examples and links to Indiana success stories, please visit the Y4Y Voices From the Field p age.
 
Currently we fund 78 subgrantees: 29 local education agencies (LEAs), 46 CBOs and FBOs, and three universities. Our CBOs/FBOs tend to have better, layered relationships with their partners, meaning that those they engage can serve more than one purpose to their programs. This allows them to build more meaningful relationships with their community and ultimately have a greater chance at long-standing impact. With family engagement, our CBOs/FBOs have the advantage of more face-to-face contact with families and generally a more relaxed interaction than our LEAs experience. Because of this, they generally report better relationships with families overall. One of our university programs was established through a strategic partnership with various university departments, the LEA, and the local faith-based community. Throughout the years, this has evolved into an interconnected web of resources and support to youth and families.
 
Most of our CBO/FBO grantees have a blended staffing model, with both school-day teachers and youth workers. By employing this approach, their staff retention tends to be a bit more consistent from year to year and ultimately, their staff feel more supported by having a consistent educator and noneducator voice at the table. We also see CBOs/FBOs doing a great job at telling the stories of their programs to both internal and external stakeholders. This is a huge best practice that others can learn from. Storytelling allows them an avenue to share both quantitative and qualitative data with stakeholders as a means of securing additional funding as well as stronger community support overall. 
 
For Y4Y tools that support some of Ms. Busk’s best practices, check out the Creating Your Sustainability Plan tool to start thinking about program partners, the Partnership Continuum to appreciate levels of partnership, and Creating a Program Elevator Speech to get you started in telling YOUR program’s story.
Caption This Image!
Thanks for playing! Here are some great 21 st CCLC-inspired captions for last month’s image:
  • What! The program director wants more data? [Great one, Carla from WV!]
  • Why isn't the day after the Super Bowl a holiday? [On point, Chelsea from PA!]
  • Ugh! Why was my nap schedule for staff denied? [Ha! Sherri from IN!]
  • Jury duty? Not with all THESE deadlines! [Yikes, Kathleen from TX!]
Your turn! Submit your program-inspired caption ideas for this image from the Y4Y Financial Literacy course. Responses will be published in next month’s issue. 
Featured Download
With each Y4Y course, you’ll always find great new tools. Download the Setting Up a Positive Learning Environment Training to Go today, and take your learning from one of Y4Y’s newest courses straight to your staff.