Ready News: October 17, 2019

Moving from Research to Implementation in Social and Emotional Learning: Exploring the Kernels of Practice with Stephanie Jones

Free Webinar
Wednesday, October 30
2:00 – 3:00 PM EDT

There’s a growing consensus in the youth-serving field of the vital importance of social and emotional learning (SEL) for young people. Research over many years suggests that preparing children to be caring, ethical, contributing adults requires supporting them to develop social and emotional skills. These skills include focusing and deploying attention, understanding and managing emotions, empathizing with and respecting others, navigating social conflicts effectively, and standing up for principles of justice and fairness.

So we know it’s important, but how do we actually put it in practice in daily interactions with young people? What if your organization or school lacks the funding or time to implement a full-blown evidence-based curriculum or program?

Stephanie Jones and the EASEL (Ecological Approaches to Social and Emotional Learning) team at the Harvard Graduate School of Education proposed identifying and using ‘kernels,” or small-scale strategies that can address specific behavior needs and are quickly taught and implemented (e.g. deep-breathing exercises for calming or hand signals to show a change in direction). These kernels represent the most common and most effective elements found in dozens of programs.

We invite you to join Forum President & CEO Karen Pittman as she sits down with Stephanie Jones to discuss the January 2017 report, “Kernels of Practice for SEL: Low-Cost, Low-Burden Strategies,” and lessons learned to date about how effective these practices are and how this more flexible, cost-effective approach to practice improvement can contribute to giving more adults in more settings the confidence and skills they need to support SEL. This session is generously supported by the Wallace Foundation.

Register now!

Trevor Davies Chosen to Be One of Just 15 ‘Afterschool Ambassadors’ in the Country

The Afterschool Alliance recently announced that Trevor Davies, Senior Manager at the Forum for Youth Investment’s David P. Weikart Center for Youth Program Quality, has been selected to serve as an Afterschool Ambassador for the Afterschool Alliance in 2019-2020. He is one of just 15 leaders in the United States, and one of two in Michigan, chosen for the honor this year. Ambassadors will continue their work supporting local afterschool programs while serving the one-year Afterschool Ambassador term, organizing public events, communicating with policymakers and community leaders, and in other ways increasing awareness and support for afterschool and summer learning programs.

“We are delighted that Trevor Davies will serve as an Afterschool Ambassador this year,” said Afterschool Alliance Executive Director Jodi Grant. “With federal funding for quality afterschool and summer learning programs at risk, we need strong advocates like Trevor. His work will mobilize parents, educators and business, community and faith leaders, among others, to send the message that afterschool programs are vital to the future of our children, families, and communities. Afterschool programs keep kids safe, inspire them to learn and help give working families peace of mind. They offer hands-on learning opportunities, opportunities to think critically and collaborate, homework help, mentors, science and technology, healthy snacks and meals, sports and fitness, arts programming, college and job prep, and much more.”

Read more.

2019 Opportunity Youth Network Summit

Washington, D.C.
November 14, 2019

We hope that you can join the Forum for Youth Investment, in partnership with ASPEN Forum for Community Solutions, at the seventh annual Opportunity Youth Network Summit, scheduled for Thursday, November 14, 2019. This year’s summit will focus on communications and program quality as it relates to Opportunity Youth. As a part of Opportunity Week in the nation’s capital, the Forum is working with leaders across the field to promote a week of events dedicated to opportunity for all young people despite their zip codes. The Forum will also host Policy Day with the National Youth Employment Coalition on Wednesday, November 13. Policy Day is a unique opportunity for local practitioners, youth leaders, and policymakers to come together and educate members of Congress on the value of federal investments in youth education and employment programs.

Learn more and register.

A Conversation with Camille Farrington on the Foundations for Young Adult Success Framework

Academic skills are not the only thing a child needs to succeed in life. What else is necessary and how can it be cultivated? How do we strengthen adult capacity and commitment? How do we address the power imbalances that keep us tethered to old definitions of learning?

Recently, the Forum’s President & CEO Karen Pittman spoke with Camille Farrington, one of the chief architects of the Foundations for Young Adult Success Framework, and explored how the framework remains critical to our efforts to put children and youth at the center and address equity.

The framework from the Chicago Consortium on School Research looks beyond the cacophony of language (grit, persistence, etc.) to provide us with an elegant statement of the determinants of the end goal: young adult success (outer circle), the critical components that youth build and combine to achieve competence, agency, identity (green circle) and the fundamental ways that youth build these skills – through action and reflection.

Explore an interactive transcript, additional resources, and an extended question and answer page.

Celebrate the 20th Annual Lights On Afterschool on October 24

Launched in October 2000, Lights On Afterschool is the only nationwide event celebrating afterschool programs and their important role in the lives of children, families, and communities. The effort has become a hallmark of the afterschool movement and generates media coverage across the country each year.

The Afterschool Alliance organizes Lights On Afterschool to draw attention to the many ways afterschool programs support students by offering them opportunities to learn new things-such as science, community service, robotics, Tae Kwon Do, and poetry-and discover new skills. The events send a powerful message that millions more kids need quality afterschool programs.

Learn more about how you and your organization can take part.

Join the Every Hour Counts National Learning Community

Every Hour Counts is seeking afterschool systems looking for coaching, peer networking. The Every Hour Counts Learning Community is a professional learning opportunity targeted to afterschool and summer learning systems from communities around the country that would benefit from learning and peer networking to enhance their community structures and services. Formed in 2006, the network has grown from six communities to almost 20. Up to 10 communities will be added, matching the field’s momentum for expanded-learning system-building, while maintaining the intimacy of the network through peer-to-peer knowledge sharing.

Learn more and apply.