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Afterschool System Building Initiative

Fourteen communities built systems that coordinated afterschool efforts and resources in order to help children and teens gain access to high-quality afterschool programs.
A black teacher working with a young boy on letter blocks at Russel Elementary School in a classroom with other students

What we did

High-quality afterschool and summer programs can give young people rich opportunities for growth, learning, and fun. But historically, a lack of coordination among the array of organizations that play roles in programming has hampered this potential. This means that young people, especially those with the greatest need, too often lack access to high-quality programs.

From 2003 to about 2017, Wallace supported 14 communities in building out-of-school-time systems to coordinate the endeavors of schools, nonprofits, funders, municipal agencies, and others. The foundation continues to fund research and other efforts to support system-building.

What we learned

Wallace has commissioned much independent research about out-of-school-time system-building. A key study, from the RAND Corporation, looked at efforts in five cities in Wallace’s first afterschool system-building initiative. Interviews with city leaders, leaders of community organizations, school principals, program providers, and others were among the methods used to produce case studies and a cross-site analysis of them. The main finding was that institutions in a city can work together to coordinate afterschool services. 

Our Grantee Partners

Boston After School & Beyond, Inc.

After School Matters, Inc.

The Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City

Providence After School Alliance, Inc.

DC Children and Youth Investment Trust Corporation

Family League of Baltimore City, Inc.

City and County of Denver

City of Fort Worth, Parks and Community Services Department

City of Grand Rapids, Our Community's Children

Jacksonville Children's Commission

Metro United Way

The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee

Fund for Philadelphia Inc.

City of Saint Paul, Department of Parks and Recreation


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