Ready News: March 4, 2021

The Forum Seeks Your Help in National Search for CEO

2021 is going to be a transformative year for the youth-serving field, and the Forum is looking forward to the challenge. Our work with all of you feels more important and needed than ever. Whether we’re engaged with you around improving program quality or re-imagining the ecosystem for learning and development or aligning policies and supporting young leaders and advocates, we are all driven to think differently and act differently so we can act together to change the odds that all young people are ready for college, work, and life.

As you know from our Board of Directors’ announcement in early January, in the midst of this vital work, we are looking for a dynamic, strategic, and visionary leader to join us as our next President & CEO. Through their partnership with the team at Isaacson, Miller, our Board has finalized a position profile and is now in the more active phase of the search process. As you’ll see in the profile, the Board envisions “the next CEO will lead a thriving organization that advances equity, research, policy, and practice across all the systems and settings that shape young people’s lives.” The next CEO will “assess the organization’s activities and operations in a new political and social environment. With this knowledge in hand, the CEO will work with staff and the Board to set a forward-looking strategic direction and objectives for the organization.”

As Judy Seltz, Forum Board member and chair of the Board’s Transition Committee, observes, “Thanks to Karen’s leadership, we are in a moment that is ripe for aligning the whole community to build the readiness of the whole child or young person – with a strong focus on the Forum’s long-standing commitment to equity. This is an incredible opportunity for a dynamic leader to join the Forum’s team and leverage the credibility and relationships that Karen and the Forum’s staff have nurtured over more than 20 years.”

As partners, funders, and friends of the Forum, you know us and our work well, so we want you to have this position description available to you and ask for your help spreading the word to individuals and networks that will reach the strongest possible candidates to join us at this exciting time in the Forum’s history.


Save the Date for the 2021 Virtual Ready by 21 National Meeting

May 19-20, 2021

The Forum for Youth Investment’s Ready by 21 National Meeting brings together local, state, and national leaders who are committed to improving partnerships, policies, and practices for children and youth. These leaders manage change at all levels – from state policy coordination and community-wide cradle-to-career efforts to out-of-school time systems, single-issue coalitions and neighborhood-based initiatives. They come from business, nonprofits, education, policy, philanthropy, and intermediaries at the national, state, and local levels.

We’re excited to announce that we will be celebrating our 9th annual Ready by 21 National Meeting virtually from May 19-20. The convening will take place online and you’re welcome to join from the comfort of your own home!

Stay tuned for further details!



Stability and Change in Afterschool Systems

Webinar in Partnership with Every Hour Counts  
Thursday, March 11 
2:00-3:00 PM ET

Citywide systems that coordinate the work of out-of-school time (OST) providers, government agencies, private funders, and others are designed to ensure that OST programs reach children who lack access to quality programming. In 2012, The Wallace Foundation asked FHI 360 to conduct an exploratory study to determine the extent to which U.S. cities with populations over 100,000 were undertaking afterschool system-building initiatives. As a follow-up to the earlier study, FHI 360 recently released a “sustainability study” to ascertain the current status of afterschool system development in the same cities that were coordinating in 2012-2013.

Join us to hear from leaders from afterschool systems around the country about how their work has progressed, the impact of systems on their communities, and their insights for the future. This session is presented in partnership with Every Hour Counts and is made possible by generous support from the Wallace Foundation.


  • Moderator: Priscilla Little, Senior Consultant, the Forum for Youth Investment
  • Nathan Beck, MOST Coordinator, City of Madison and Madison Metropolitan School District
  • Jessica Donner, Executive Director, Every Hour Counts
  • Suzette L. Harvey, President & CEO, Prime Time Palm Beach County
  • Fahren Johnson, Director of Strategic Initiatives, Greentrike Expanded Learning Opportunities
  • Chris Smith, President & Executive Director, Boston After School & Beyond

Register now!



Reimagine the Future of Afterschool: Building Back Better with Youth and Communities

Every Hour Counts Virtual Event 
April 28-30, 2021

The afterschool field sprang into action to meet the needs of their communities and foster more just societies. Now is the time to come together and look forward. At the 2021 Every Hour Counts National Institute, leader will gather virtually to reimagine the future of afterschool and what’s possible to engage, empower, and support young people. Participants will explore how to develop community-wide solutions with young people and leaders from across communities.

Join forward-thinking leaders—intermediary leaders, community providers, school district representatives, policymakers, funders, researchers, and youth on April 28-30, 2021, to Reimagine the Future of Afterschool to blaze a path forward. Every Hour Counts network leaders who represent 28 communities, 3,500 school and community partnerships and reach 500,000 young people, will share successes, challenges, strategies, and resources to build stronger learning systems that holistically support children and youth.

Register now!


Partnerships for Social and Emotional Learning Initiative Podcast Series

The new podcast series from The Wallace Foundation shares findings and early lessons from a RAND Corporation study of the Partnerships for Social and Emotional Learning Initiative (PSELI). The five-episode series features in-depth conversations with school/district and afterschool/out-of-school time leaders about their experiences working together to help children develop social and emotional skills.

PSELI is a comprehensive, multiyear initiative to explore whether and how children can benefit from intentional partnerships between schools and afterschool/out-of-school time programs focused on building social and emotional skills.

Episodes in the series focus on:

  • The importance of social and emotional learning and the initiative’s design
  • Developing adults’ capacity to promote social and emotional learning in students
  • Building effective partnerships between schools and afterschool/out-of-school time programs
  • The role of designated coaches in promoting social and emotional learning
  • Steps to integrate social and emotional learning across in- and out-of- school settings

Listen now!