Network for Youth Success Digest- November 2016
View this email in your browser

Network for Youth Success Digest

 November 2016

Network for Youth Success News

Registration for Conference Begins

Registration for our conference begins on December 9th! If you register before January 27th, you qualify for our Early Bird Rate, $110 for one day and $175 for both days. The rate for registering after January 27th is $125 for one day and $190 for both days. You can also save on the conference registration by becoming a member!

Scholarship funding to participate in this training may be available through the Educational Incentive Program (EIP). For more information, or to apply for a scholarship, please visit You may also contact EIP at or 800-295-9616. If you have received an EIP, please sign it and mail it to the Network along with your registration. 

The Embassy Suites in Saratoga Springs is now accepting reservations for hotel rooms for the conference using the code "AFT".

More information regarding our conference can be found here.

Policy Updates


Post Election Impacts at the State Level

While much attention was paid to the Presidential and Congressional elections over the past year, every member of the New York State Legislature was also up for re-election as well, including 150 Assembly seats and 63 Senate seats. After the dust had settled on election night, the Democrats in the Assembly retained their majority, while the Senate looks to stay under Republican control, pending two Long Island races (SD-8 and SD-5) that are still undergoing a hand-count as of November 30th. 

What does this spell for next year's state budget, and the future of afterschool and summer funding? While nothing seems to have changed much in the makeup of the two legislative bodies, last year's budget points to the Senate and Assembly continuing their focus on increasing investments in New York's schools, with the FY16-17 budget including a record increase to education spending. The current budget also included a record investment in community schools, with $175 million in new funding being allocated to schools considered struggling or persistently struggling, as well as high-need school districts. While this new funding isn't dedicated solely to afterschool or summer programs, guidelines released by the State Education Department over the summer included afterschool and summer as an allowable expense for schools and districts. With much attention now being paid to community schools, and the significant role that afterschool, summer, and expanded learning play in their successful implementation, advocates and lawmakers will continue to push for additional investments in this area through budget negotiations in 2017. 

The Network released the FY17-18 budget ask in September, which includes a recommendation for a $10.5 million increase to the Advantage After School Program. This increase in funding would allow for the per-student allotment rate to be raised from $1,375 to $1,600 to account for the increase in minimum wage and would expand the number of children served from 16,000 to 20,000. We will continue to advocate for the Advantage After School Program throughout budget negotiations and hope to continue the momentum we've built over the last two years around increasing funding to afterschool. More details on our budget ask can be found here

Resource of the Month


Helpful E-Newsletters

If you're looking for additional newsletters to follow regarding expanded learning, our website provides a variety of resources. The newsletters we have listed contain resources for professionals of any kind in the expanded learning field, as well as many regarding policy in the expanded learning field. Each newsletter has a link to sign-up. The list of newsletters can be found here on our website.


The place where trainers, employers, and people who work with kids connect online to share job, training, and career opportunities in New York State.

QSA Tip of the Month


Using the Quality Self-Assessment (QSA) Tool to Create Continuous Program Quality Improvement 

Just getting started with the QSA Tool? Veteran QSA user looking to revamp your process? Check out the Network for Youth Success' latest webinar on using the QSA Tool to learn more about the tool, the recommended process for incorporating the tool into your everyday activities, and the free resources to support your self-assessment work. Watch the recording yourself and share it with colleagues who will also participate in your quality improvement process! Access the webinar recording here

STEM Corner

Celebrate Admiral Grace Murray Hopper!

December 9th is the birthday of computing pioneer Admiral Grace Murray Hopper, who was born in 1906 in New York City. In recognition of her birthday and her towering achievements in the field, celebrates the week of December 5 – 11 as Computer Science Education Week. This annual event is dedicated to inspiring K-12 students to take an interest in computer science and to highlight the role of computing in a variety of career paths. Educators can get involved in various ways in the celebration including teaching an ‘Hour of Code’ in the classroom, hosting a CS tech Jam, or promoting computer science education and be an advocate. Check out this link for more tips and resources on how to inspire young students to try computer science.

Switching gears slightly, the holiday season is upon us and so is the season of gift giving. Here is a great idea for giving gifts that can inspire curiosity in young children and build their lifelong passion for learning.

Nutrition Corner

Talking about Healthy Eating

The Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) helps afterschool programs increase the nutritional value of suppers and snacks served during the program. However, developing child friendly meals that are healthy and nutritious is often difficult to maintain on a weekly basis. Take the guess work out of pleasing your students’ taste buds by getting to know their preferences through fun, environmentally friendly, and engaging activities like this Healthy Journal. Created by the Whole Food Kids Foundation, the Healthy Journal is easy to make and suitable for all ages. Some of our very own Network for Youth Success staff have even started healthy journals at home. Starting a healthy journal keeps the healthy eating conversation going beyond the plate and presents a great opportunity to discuss the benefits of healthy eating with your students. 

Field Resources, Tools, and Research


What Students See

It's no secret that kids model their behavior off that of the adults they see everyday. However, the environment in which children spend their time also has an impact on their personal development. Barb Blackburn, a teaching consultant, provides an explanation on how these different factors influence children on a daily basis. The article, which also contains tips on how to be the best model to set examples for children, can be found here.

The Election and Afterschool

After a big election year for the United States, the Afterschool Alliance has outlined the platforms of our newly elected officials and how they will impact afterschool within the nation. They looked at the President's campaign platform as well as that of the entire Republican Party. The Afterschool Alliance also included a sample letter that can be personalized and sent to any elected official explaining the importance of afterschool programming for children as well as laying a framework for potential partnerships. The entire article can be found here.

SEL Challenge

The Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) Challenge was designed to identify practices for using SEL skills with adolescents as well as identifying ways to further develop these skills. The SEL Challenge produces a set of standards for SEL practice along with performance measures for the practice. The two year study produced results that can be used by policy makers to recognize the importance of SEL. The findings of the study as well as a variety of other resources can be found here.

Spotlight on Expanded Learning Opportunities in
New York and Beyond


Hudson Bluehawk Nation Afterschool Program

The Hudson Bluehawk Nation Afterschool Program serves students from kindergarten all the way through their senior year of high school. The program, based in Hudson, NY, offers a variety of activities for their participants, all age appropriate for the group being served. Every 8 weeks, the activities being offered change in order to ensure that participants receive a wide range of opportunities. An all-girls group is even offered. This group is aimed at empowering girls from a young age to strive towards success as they progress from elementary school to high school.

The program receives funding from federal grants, including 21st Century, as well as state funding through the Advantage After School Program and support from an assortment of local foundations, ensuring that the community is involved in the success of the students. The program also partners with local organizations which facilitate many of the activities that the students participate in, including gardening, local history projects, and fitness. The deep involvement of the community allows for the program to receive the attention it deserves, as well as allow the students to know the entire community is devoted to their success. An assortment of funding streams allows for a wider variety of activities to be offered to children, which ultimately allows the students to have a greater exposure to experiences in their lives.

Upcoming Events

12/6/16 @ 1pm: WEBINAR- Measuring Staff Engagement in OST Programs
Positive adult-child interactions are key to successful afterschool programs. This webinar will present research findings from a study on an innovative approach to strengths-based professional development, Simple Interactions, which uses short video clips of staff engaged in positive interactions with youth. In addition, a manager from a large youth program will discuss the implementation of this model and the positive effects it had on the staff dynamic.  More information is available here.

12/12/16: Pockets of Hope: A Summit on Protective Practices for Boys of Color in Afterschool
In this summit, a panel of policy makers and researchers will share national and city-focused perspectives on why supporting race, ethnic, gender, and academic identity development matters for boys and young men of color. Participants will also hear about the pockets of hope that exist in many afterschool programs directly from the expert practitioners who participated in the intensive Boys of Color in Afterschool Protective Practices Institute – a collaboration between PASE and Dr. Edward Fergus-Arcia, Assistant Professor, Educational Leadership and Policy, NYU Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development. More information and the registration page can be found here.

12/16/16: PASEsetter Award Nominations Due
PASEsetters are afterschool educators who have made a significant impact on youth, families, and communities. They’ve shown commitment, creativity and leadership when it comes to helping young people succeed. PASEsetters start new initiatives and see them through, while being a role model for their kids and for other afterschool educators. More information on nominations can be found here.

2/22-2/25/2017: Beyond School Hours National Conference
Next year's Beyond School Hours Conference will be held in Atlanta, GA, and will be celebrating it's 20th year! Registration is now open. More information is available here.

2/25/2017: PASEsetter Awards
PASEsetter Awards are given to afterschool educators who demonstrate outstanding commitment, energy, and creativity in their work, and who achieve excellence in and exhibit true devotion to improving the lives of the young people in out-of-school time. Winners receive a crystal award, a $5,000 donation to their organization, and 100 Jets tickets for their youth and staff. More information on the event is available here.

3/19- 3/22/2017: National AfterSchool Association Convention
Join NAA for the premier learning, networking, and professional development event for the field of afterschool. The event includes over 170 workshops, 20 hours of networking, and 100 exhibitors. Register here.

3/31- 4/1/2017: Network for Youth Success Annual Conference
Join us in Saratoga Springs, NY for our Annual Conference! Next year's conference, titled Preparing Youth for the Future Through Social and Emotional Learning, will provide quality workshops on Social and Emotional Learning, as well as a wide range of other topics related to the afterschool and summer learning field. 

4/18-21/2017: SAVE THE DATE- BOOST (Best of Out-of-School Time) Conference
The annual BOOST Conference will be held in Palm Springs, CA from April 18 – 21st. Join more than 2000 out-of-school-time professionals for workshops, networking opportunities, and the BOOST Film Festival. More information can be found on the BOOST website here.

If you have content you’d like featured in a future Digest, questions about anything that appears here, or any other feedback you would like to share, contact Erin Broderick, Capacity Building Director, at

Copyright © 2016 New York State Network for Youth Success, All rights reserved.
unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp