Ready News: June 26, 2020

Changing the Odds for Youth: A Community Dialogue on What it Will Take

Recently, the Forum for Youth Investment, the National Urban League, and the American Institutes for Research united to start the Readiness Projects, an effort to devote time, resources, and perspectives to stimulate equity-driven solutions and policies.

To further this effort, the partners have launched a new blog on Medium, Changing the Odds for Youth: A Community Dialogue on What it Will Take, to start a critical conversation on what we must do to upend inequities and build back better and broader together. Transformational opportunities are never planned. We must be ready now to re-imagine how to ensure equitable, integrated opportunities for learning and development in the places where it happens in schools and communities.

Shared disruptions can propel us to create new “super-powers” to challenge assumptions, dismantle traditions, and accelerate change.

Visit the blog space and add your voice to the conversation.



System Building Beyond the Bell

Free Webinar
June 30, 2020
1:00-2:00 PM EDT

Join the American Institutes for Research (AIR) and The Opportunity Project (Tulsa, OK) for this webinar focused on integrating learning systems through quality expanded learning opportunities. AIR and The Opp will highlight promising practices in coordinating strategy alignment with a focus on social and emotional learning. Participants will have the opportunity to learn how effective coordination of quality improvement activities can establish a collaborative culture, enhance cross-sector alignment, and develop collective responsibility.


  • Amy Anderson, Associate Director, Experiential Learning, The Opportunity Project
  • Jazi Hiriart, Associate Director, Social & Emotional Well-Being, The Opportunity Project
  • Fausto Lopez, Content Area Expert, American Institutes for Research

Register now.


Supporting Quality in Virtual Youth Programs

With youth development programs suddenly shifting to virtual delivery, there is a need to consider what program elements and staff practices are critical to foster relationships and create experiences that support the development of young people in these spaces.

Supports for quality improvement grow in importance the longer that virtual offerings remain a fixture of youth programs. Virtual programming seems likely to be with us into the next school year due to uncertainty around COVID-19-related public health guidelines, and already programs are seeing potential benefits of continuing virtual programs to support their mission.

Read more.



All of Who I Am: Perspectives from Young People About Social, Emotional, and Cognitive Learning

A growing number of parents, researchers, educators, and other youth-supporting adults are joining the movement toward a more integrated approach to learning that focuses on young people’s social, emotional, and cognitive growth. Less is known, however, about how young people themselves perceive and experience these approaches.
A new report from the Center for Promise, the research division of America’s Promise Alliance, helps answer this question. All of Who I Am shares insights from a qualitative study of more than 100 young people who describe their experiences with the integration of social, emotional, and cognitive development in exemplar learning settings across the country. The report’s title, drawn from a young person’s own words, encapsulates the most significant insight from the research: that these learning environments are nurturing young people’s sense of themselves as valued, multi-dimensional community members.

Learn more about what young people see as essential to their learning environments and access the full report and companion guide.



Voices of New Orleans Youth: What Do the City’s Young People Think About Their Schools and Communities?

Most cities have limited information about what their young people experience and how youth view their schools and communities. We know a great deal about student test scores, high school graduation rates, and neighborhood poverty rates, but these data points tell us little about students’ experiences or how public programs and institutions can better serve them.

A new study from the Education Research Alliance for New Orleans summarizes results from the first New Orleans citywide youth survey, which was conducted with local education and community organizations during the 2018-19 school year. Key findings are shared along with a discussion of the differences between the responses of white students and students of color, which is of particular importance, given the large share of people of color in the city and the long-standing inequities they have historically faced in school, community, and life opportunities.

Review the report.