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Friday, 14 November 2014 12:55

The summit was sponsored by the Virginia Department of Education, the Virginia Department of Social Services, the Virginia School Age Child Care Association, the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, and the Soho Center.

This event was kicked off by VPOST Youth Ambassadors. They demonstrated how Afterschool and Out-of-School Time aids in closing the achievement gap. Blaire Denson, VPOST Director, spoke about the impact of out-of-school time programs on strengthening families, engaging youth, and improving outcomes for children and youth in Virginia. The keynote address was offered by Jim Harris, owner of Opportunities Consulting Services and the Positive Behavior Supports Coordinator for West Virginia Schools, housed at Marshall University.  Jim discussed afterschool as a prevention strategy and motivated his audience on creating greatness in afterschool programming. Following Jim's keynote address, Kathy Johnson, Chair of the VPOST Quality Committee unveiled the Draft Out-of-School Time Quality Standards for Virginia.  During this interactive session, summit attendees were able to share their thoughts on each of the eight standards highlighted during Kathy's presentation.  Following a networking luncheon, The Honorable Anne Holton, Secretary of Education, addressed summit attendees.  She commended the group for their leadership and contribution of wrap-around services which provide resources to communities and families to create a collective impact in Virginia.  The afternoon consisted of concurrent breakout sessions.  The sessions included:

Physical Activity and Wellness:  Simple Resources and Strategies to Help Kids Move More

Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math (STEAM) Panel

College and Career Readiness:  The Value of Youth and Adult Partnerships

Afterschool as a Prevention Strategy: Collaborating With Parents in the Out-of-School Setting:  What an opportunity!

Afterschool as a Prevention Strategy: Evidence-based Communication: Enlisting Motivational Interviewing (MI) Techniques for Engaging with Youth

Throughout the day, there were opportunities for focused conversations to generate ideas, share goals, and talk about next steps. VPOST Chair, Mark Emery, challenged attendees to engage stakeholders, review and provide commentary on the VPOST Quality Standards, develop a shared definition of quality, and develop indicator measures for the standards. In closing, Jeanna Beker, Director of the Soho Center, spoke to the group about the importance of children's literacy.  "We want school-age children to have the chance to enjoy looking at quality children's books, hearing them read aloud, and practicing their emerging reading skills," said Beker. The Soho Center, in partnership with the Virginia Department of Social Services, provided each summit attendee with a set of 15 books to take back to their program.  The ultimate goal of the event was not only to create local champions for raising the bar for afterschool, but also to build public will and practical structures to support youth access to quality out-of-school time programs in communities statewide.



Last Updated on Thursday, 15 January 2015 12:41