December 2011

December 2011

«AYPF Wishes You Safe and Happy Holidays!»


Forum – Using Data to Improve Quality in City-wide Afterschool Systems: Lessons from Boston, Massachusetts – December 19, 2011

The second forum in the series on the use of data to improve quality in two city-wide afterschool systems will highlight the work in Boston. The focus will include findings from Volume II of the recent Wallace Foundation-commissioned report, Hours of Opportunity: the Power of Data to Improve After-School Systems Citywide. Jennifer Sloan-McCombs, Senior Policy Researcher, RAND Corporation, will discuss the role of management information systems in building quality systems. Boston’s city-wide data alignment efforts will then be highlighted with presentations by Daphne Griffin, Executive Director from the public agency Boston Centers for Youth and Families, and Chris Smith, Executive Director, Boston Afterschool & Beyond. They will discuss the implementation of data systems that inform students, programs, and policy makers as well as align resources among multiple entities.


Forum Brief – Career Pathways to Employment: Aligning Career and Technical Education to Labor Market Projections

A forum brief summarizing the November 14th AYPF event, “Career Pathways to Employment: Aligning Career and Technical Education to Labor Market Projections,” featuring Anthony Carnevale, Director of the Center on Education, and James Stone, Director of the National Research Center for Career & Technical Education.

End-of-Year Publication Sale – 50% Off

From November to the end of December, all AYPF publications are 50% off the listed price. To order an AYPF publication, please see the publication section of our webpage, and fill out an order form found here. Shipping & handling rates are listed at the end of the order form. Please contact John Wesley at (202) 775-9731 or email him ( for rates on bulk order and for shipping charges for orders to be sent outside the continental U.S.


Database Administrator/Administrative Assistant (Part-time Position)

AYPF is seeking a part-time Database Administrator/Administrative Assistant to join our small nonprofit team dedicated to providing learning events to education and youth policymakers. We are looking for an experienced database administrator to help manage the change process and adapt a new customer relationship management (CRM) system to our unique needs and suggest ways to continuously improve and streamline our work. We are looking for an individual who is familiar with database management software, CRM programs, e-mail management with list segmentation, and who can determine ways to store, organize, analyze, use, and present data. This position will be a part-time position, for between 24-30 hours per week, at an hourly rate of between $18-$24 depending on experience. AYPF will work with the individual to determine an advantageous and flexible work schedule. Please send resume, cover letter, and complete list of three references to Christine Wilson at by December 30, 2011. For more information, please visit our website at

Internship Opportunities at AYPF for Spring, 2012

AYPF is hiring Interns for the Spring semester. Internships at AYPF are substantive in nature, and interns are integral members of our team. Interns are expected to engage in a variety of activities, including researching and analyzing data, writing fact sheets and summaries, and planning and helping to run forums and briefings on Capitol Hill. Please visit our website for more information: and apply by December 20, 2011.


Check these out – recommended reading from the AYPF staff

Striving for Student Success: A Model of Shared Accountability

Education Sector In this publication, authors Kelly Bathgate, Richard Lee Colvin, and Elena Silva look at communities that are working to create these shared accountability systems. In particular, the authors highlight the work of the Strive Partnership of Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky.

Made up of more than 300 civic groups, businesses, nonprofits, colleges, public agencies, and philanthropies, Strive “coordinates every service and support that children and adolescents need, at every stage of their education and development,” the authors write. Put simply, these organizations are all dedicated to seeing students succeed, from cradle to career. Although many communities provide these services, according to the report, what is different about Strive and other such partnerships is their shared goals—and the acceptance of joint responsibility formeeting those goals. The authors report on the results of the program, including a marked increase in the percentage of children who come to kindergarten ready to learn in Cincinnati as well as in Newport and Covington, the two Kentucky communities that are also part of Strive.

Data for Action 2011

Data Quality Campaign The Data Quality Campaign’s seventh annual state analysis, Data for Action 2011, reports that states have made large progress in building their student data systems. More states than ever— 36, up from zero in 2005—have implemented all of DQC’s 10 Essential Elements of Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems. The report finds that all states now has the capacity to empower all stakeholders—from parents to policymakers—to use data to inform decisions to improve student achievement.

Dropout Recovery is National Recovery: How Federal Policies Can Support the Spread of Back on Track Through College Pathways

Jobs for the Future Even in the early days of the recession, over six million young adults were both out of school and lacked a high school diploma, according to the Center for Labor Market Studies in 2009. Most of these young people understand all too well the value of a postsecondary credential in the emerging economy, but few have the good fortune to find a pathway that helps them attain their goals.

Across the country, national youth-serving networks, low-income school districts, and community colleges have begun to put in place Back on Track pathways that are two to three times more successful in graduating vulnerable young people and supporting their persistence in the first year of college. This brief explains how school districts, national networks, and community colleges can maximize their potential to spread these pathways.

From Soft Skills to Hard Data: Measuring Youth Program Outcomes The Forum for Youth Investment

This guide reviews eight youth outcome measurement tools that are appropriate for use in after-school and other settings. For each tool, it provides sample items and crucial information about usability, cost, and evidence of reliability and validity. The guide can help providers select conceptually grounded, psychometrically sound measures appropriate for programs that serve upper-elementary- through high school-aged youth.

Better Data, Better Rates Higher Education Research Institute, University of California at Los Angeles

This report brings together data from the “freshman survey” by UCLA’s Cooperative Institutional Research Program and graduation numbers from the National Student Clearinghouse. The aim of the report is to help colleges determine if they have actually improved retention rates or if they have simply attracted better students. The data collected suggests that institutions should consider factors like the emotional health of students, whether students are working full time while they are in college, and whether a student is among the first in his or her family to attend college in order to better attract and retain students in the future.

Webinar – Improving Systems and Settings: Quality Improvement in Asheville The Forum for Youth Investment

This webinar, hosted by the Forum for Youth Investment, centered around the need to make high-quality interactions between young people and adults in order to promote healthy behavior, student retention, and problem-solving skills on both community- and state-wide levels. The webinar stressed the importance of approaching quality improvement from a community-wide perspective, which helps to ensure that the good work done in one corner of a community – such as a school, afterschool program or gymnasium – is complemented by work done elsewhere in the community. Presenters included Joe Bertoletti of the David P. Weikart Center for Youth Program Quality and Gina Gallo from the United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County, who discussed their work to assess the quality, reach and coordination of services in Asheville, North Carolina.

The American Youth Policy Forum (AYPF), a nonprofit, nonpartisan professional development organization based in Washington, DC, provides learning opportunities for policymakers, practitioners, and researchers working on youth and education issues at the national, state, and local levels.

AYPF events and publications are made possible by a consortium of philanthropic foundations: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, William T. Grant Foundation, Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, Carnegie Corporation of New York , State Farm Insurance, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and others.

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