NIOST puts training for its Assessment of Program Practices Tool (APT) online.




NIOST is selected as a partner of the Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC) to guide the National Center on Afterschool and Summer Enrichment (NCASE). Funded by the Administration for Children and Families’ Office of Child Care, under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, EDC receives $10 million over five years to ensure that low-income school-age children have increased access to high-quality afterschool and summer learning experiences through NCASE that contribute to their overall development and academic achievement.


NIOST becomes a subcontractor to Global Evaluation & Applied Research Solutions, Inc. on a five-year project with the U.S. Department of Education to provide monitoring and technical assistance to 21st Century Community Learning Centers in states across the country.


NIOST, in partnership with the National Writing Project and funded by the Robert Bowne Foundation, launches the National Afterschool Matters Fellowship, a two-year professional development and leadership training program for mid-career OST and youth development professionals.


NIOST serves as the research and evaluation study partner to BridgeUp: STEM an initiative of the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) in New York City. The focus is on the delivery of AMNH science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) learning experiences and resources to a cohort of New York City high school girls. The study includes both summative evaluation components and consultation towards program design and development.


NIOST puts the training for its Assessment of Program Practices Tool (APT) online. APT is a quality assessment tool designed to help OST programs examine practices that research suggests are linked to youth outcomes.


Director Ellen Gannett received the Hedley S. Dimock Award from the American Camp Association, “given to persons who have made significant contributions to camping through related fields.”




NIOST serves as research partner to the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education 21st Century Community Learning Centers Summer Enhancement Grant Program. In 2015, this program funded 10 summer learning programs with a special emphasis on utilization of project-based learning approaches, outreach to diverse learners, and a blended academic and enrichment learning approach.





Director Ellen Gannett named One of the Top 25 Most Influential People in Afterschool by the National AfterSchool Association.




The BOKS before-school activity program, based in Massachusetts and funded by the Reebok Foundation, undergoes a multi-year evaluation by NIOST researchers and was cited by First Lady Michelle Obama in her remarks at the launch of the Let’s Move! Active Schools initiative.




The Wyoming Afterschool Alliance, an initiative of the Wyoming Community Foundation, partners with NIOST and the Third Mile Group of Denver, Colorado, to conduct a research project surveying the capacity of the public and private afterschool systems and to assess their effectiveness across Wyoming. The project is funded by a grant from the Mott Foundation with matching funds from the Wyoming Department of Education, the Wyoming Department of Family Services, and the John P. Ellbogen Foundation.




The evidence-based, Healthy Eating and Physical Activity (HEPA) Standards created by the Healthy Out-of-School Time Coalition (HOST) that was co-founded by NIOST (see 2009) are adopted by the National AfterSchool Association, the YMCA of the USA, the Council on Accreditation, the National Recreation and Park Association, the Boys & Girls Club of America, and the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, and disseminated to tens of thousands of OST professionals and supporters.


NIOST works with NASA experts and other OST professional advisors to adapt afterschool activity guides from NASA Planetary Science’s formal education curricula. NIOST provides evaluation services, reviews the adaptation of the activity guide, provides input for a preliminary design of the training model and supplemental video, and identifies ways for participants to progress in NASA OST educational offerings.




NIOST receives a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to assess physical activity and healthy eating standards and practices in OST  programs. Funded through the Foundation’s Active Living Research Program, the one-year project, in collaboration with the University of Massachusetts Boston and the YMCA of the USA, looks at a national sample of OST programs serving K-12 children and youth, especially low-income children of color.


NIOST serves as research and evaluation partner to the Boston Summer Learning Project, a five-year initiative launched under the leadership of Boston’s Opportunity Agenda in collaboration with Boston After School & Beyond and the Boston Public Schools. NIOST researchers conducted a mixed-methods evaluation using surveys, student assessments, program observation, and interviews.

NIOST adds a survey for youth to its existing Survey of Academic Youth Outcomes (SAYO) tools for assessing the quality of afterschool programs, giving youth in grades 4 through 12 the opportunity to provide afterschool program staff and administrators with anonymous feedback about their experiences and plans for the future. These surveys help programs target areas in need of improvement, better meet the needs of youth, and track progress with quality and youth outcomes over time.




NIOST founds the Healthy Out-of- School Time Coalition (HOST) with the YMCA of the USA and the University of Massachusetts-Boston, funded through the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, to create evidence-based standards that foster the best possible nutrition and physical activity outcomes for children in grades K-12 in OST programs. (See 2011.)


NIOST launches an interactive online training for its Survey of Afterschool Youth Outcomes (SAYO) evaluation tool, offering step-by-step instructions that show program staff how to collect data effectively and responsibly, and how to analyze, interpret, and use their results for long-term program improvement.




NIOST partners with with nFocus Software™ to develop and launch the Assessment of Afterschool Program Practices Tool, now the Afterschool Program Assessment System (APAS), an automated system that helps afterschool programs nationwide improve program quality and reach desired youth outcomes. APAS includes two measurement tools: the Survey of Afterschool Youth Outcomes (SAYO; now the Survey of Academic Youth Outcomes) and the Assessing Afterschool Program Practices Tool (APT). Unlike other assessment systems, these scientifically field-tested tools allow users to focus on evaluating specific, observable practices.


Michelle Seligson, former NIOST director, receives the inaugural Excellence in Leadership Award from the School-Age Notes Foundation during the National Associations of AfterSchool Association’s annual conference.




The Robert Bowne Foundation awards more than $2.1 million over five years to NIOST for the National Afterschool Matters Initiative to promote research and professional development for the OST industry. NIOST takes ownership of this initiative, which had been incubated by the Foundation and includes a Practitioner Fellowship Program; the Afterschool Matters journal; the Edmund A. Stanley, Jr. Research Grantee program; and Research Roundtables, a forum for connecting research and practice.




In collaboration with the United Way of Massachusetts Bay and the Intercultural Center for

Research in Education (INCRE), NIOST published the Massachusetts Afterschool Research (MARS) Study, a statewide investigation examining the links between afterschool program quality and student outcomes, and the efficacy of various models of afterschool for youth. One of the first studies of this scope nationally, MARS aims to create consensus around the elements of program quality, features, and participation that contribute to positive outcomes for youth so that funders, providers, advocates, and policy-makers are better prepared to expand the quality and availability of afterschool programs.




NIOST becomes a technical assistance partner with the Wallace Foundation’s Next

Generation Afterschool System Building Initiative, working with nine cities (Baltimore, Denver, Fort Worth, Grand Rapids, Jacksonville, Louisville, Nashville, Philadelphia, and St. Paul) to help them strengthen their city-wide systems and provide high-quality OST opportunities for children and youth. NIOST also worked with a number of these cities to inform their development of reliable data systems and the use of this data to improve their OST programming.




NIOST, in partnership with the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary

Education, begins developing tools and offering technical assistance to support the Massachusetts 21st Century Community Learning Centers programs. The result is the creation of the Survey of Academic and Youth Outcomes (SAYO) Teacher and Staff data collection surveys, which becomes the first of three APAS tools (see 2008) that now include the Assessment of Program Practices Tool (APT) and a youth survey (SAYO-Y).




NIOST Director Michelle Seligson joins advisory board of new publication Afterschool Matters, a national, peer-reviewed journal dedicated to promoting professionalism, scholarship, and consciousness in afterschool education.



Director Michelle Seligson participates in a panel at the White House Conference on Child Care, attended by President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Clinton and other top administration officials.




NIOST rolls out the ASQ (Afterschool Quality) process to help afterschool programs engage in continuous quality improvement. The ASQ has been used for self-assessment purposes, state-level quality rating system advancement, and as a way to become accredited from the Council on Accreditation.




NIOST provides national coordination and technical assistance to the MOST (Making the Most of Out-of- School Time) Initiative in Boston, Chicago, and Seattle – the first large scale system-building model of its kind. NIOST and the MOST partners work together to develop a sustainable infrastructure to support continuous improvement in the quality and accessibility of

OST programs in these three urban settings. Many of the MOST systems will continue to function in some capacity over a decade after funding ends.




NIOST partners with the National School Age Child Care Alliance (now the National AfterSchool Association) to develop a National Improvement and Accreditation System (NIAS), based on the ASQ process. (See 1991.) These were the first national standards for afterschool programs.




NIOST’s Susan O’Connor published Assessing School-Age Child Care Quality, outlining the ASQ: a team approach to evaluating and improving OST programs.




Ruth Kramer Baden, Andrea Genser, James Levine, and Michelle Seligson of NIOST publish School-Age Child Care: An Action Manual to help school officials, parents, and others design, implement, and operate school-age childcare programs. The manual is built on the authors’ extensive research into what worked and what didn’t in existing programs around the country.



National Institute on Out-of-School Time (originally known as the School-Age Child Care Project) begins extensive research, education, training, publication, and program development designed to improve the quality of children's OST time.



    "NIOST has been an anchor for numerous school age care projects we do, including ASQ (After-School Quality) and Links to Learning. They are a nationally respected organization that Pennsylvania has partnered with for over 20 years."

    – Betsy O. Saatman, TA Specialist/SAC Initiatives, Pennsylvania Key

    "NIOST was a core partner in supporting the development of quality improvement systems across the nine cities that participated in The Wallace Foundation Next Generation Afterschool System-Building Initiative. The NIOST team worked well with other technical assistance partners in the initiative, always willing to pitch in and collaborate with others to make our professional learning community meetings a team effort. I truly hope the Foundation has an opportunity to partner with them in the future."

    – Priscilla M. Little, Initiative Manager, The Wallace Foundation


    "NIOST has been a leader in the out-of-school time field for as long as I can remember, and I have relied on their research, tools, and advice to improve my practice throughout my career. Their staff members are good partners and good listeners, and their influence across the country is palpable."

    – Jane Quinn, Vice President and Director of National Center for Community Schools, Children's Aid Society

    "Georgia Hall, Ellen Gannett, and the NIOST team have been instrumental in driving the healthy afterschool movement. Their dedication to quality practice, informed policy, and collective impact is instrumental in our effort to create healthier communities."

    – Daniel W. Hatcher, Director, Community Partnerships, Alliance for a Healthier Generation

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The National Institute on Out-of-School Time

A program of the Wellesley Centers for Women at Wellesley College

Wellesley Centers for Women
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