The ABCs of ELOs
21st Century (learning) Skills: The Framework for 21st Century Learning consists of core subjects and themes that revolve around three core skills: life and career skills, learning and innovation skills, and information media, and technology skills. These are the skills that students need in order to be successful in the 21st century. Principals of 21st Century skills include authentic learning, mental model building, internal motivation, multi-modal learning, social learning and international learning. The 21st Century skills are also mentioned as “non-cognitive skills,” “social-emotional learning (SEL),” character development, etc.
40-40-20: Approved by the Oregon Legislature in 2011 in Senate Bill 253, the “40-40-20 Goal” is for 40% of adult Oregonians to hold a bachelor’s or advanced degree, 40% to have an associate’s degree or a meaningful postsecondary certificate, and all adult Oregonians to hold a high school diploma or equivalent by the year 2025.
Afterschool: Programs and activities for 5-18 year-olds that take place when they are not in school, including before/after school, evenings, weekends, summer, and holidays. Also known as Expanded Learning Opportunities (ELOs).
Youth Development: Traditional youth development programs have included 4-H, Boys and Girls Clubs, Girl and Boy Scouts, Camp Fire, and youth leadership programs. Youth development may also include community intervention or treatment programs, as well as programs that target at-risk populations. These programs and activities usually have been designed for older children and youth, from age 10 through 21.
Recreation: Afterschool recreation includes programs at community centers, schools or parks, as well as classes (such as art, music, and dance) and sports teams that are offered by park and recreation district/departments, community groups, and some for-profit organizations. These activities are not academic in nature, but rather allow students time to relax or play. Sports, games, and clubs fall into this category. Occasional academic aspects of recreation activities can be pointed out, but the primary lessons learned in recreational activities are in the areas of social skills, teamwork, leadership, competition, and discipline.
Childcare: When an adult cares for and supervises children 5-12 years old while they are not in school and their primary caregiver is unavailable to take care of their immediate needs. In Oregon, childcare programs are licensed through the Office of Child Care and must meet basic health and safety requirements. Childcare, as defined in federal law, serves school age children from birth up to the age of 13.
Education: Includes community education/community schools, schools or school districts offering enrichment programs, and programs that receive 21st Century Community Learning Center grant funding. The focus is often on enrichment and/or academic support, including tutoring. Education-related programs and activities can serve children and youth from kindergarten through 12th grade.
Content Specialist: A content specialist provides leadership to ELOs in curriculum, instruction, assessment, and standards; and, is knowledgeable in the content area as it relates to specific subject matter.
Academic Outcomes: The skills, content, knowledge and abilities that students develop through course work and other educational experiences in school and outside of school.
Accreditation: A process in which certification of competency, authority, or credibility is presented. The accreditation process assures consumers that programs meet a professionally recognized level of quality.
Achievement (academic in youth): Academic achievement refers to the level of schooling youth have successfully completed and the ability to attain success in their studies. Academic achievement can also mean academic performance and is demonstrated in grades, standardized test scores, college attendance, etc. See also “proficiency.”
Achievement Gap: The achievement gap refers to the disparity in academic performance between groups of students. The achievement gap is reflected in grades, standardized test scores, course selection, dropout rates, college completion rates and other success and performance measures. See also, “Equity Lens.”
Afterschool and Youth Development – AYD: A field of professionals and volunteers who provide before school, afterschool, summer, and other types of learning and development programs for children and youth ages 5-21 years. AYD programs are supported by schools, public agencies, childcare, for and not-for-profit entities, and community-and faith-based organizations. AYD programs are transformational for many disengaged youth who have not been served in traditional settings, placing priorities on high quality programs and racial equity in AYD field.
Afterschool Professional: A person who is employed in the field of afterschool.
Assessment: An interactive process between students and instructors that measures a performance or skill, with the goal of offering feedback and fostering growth and improvement. Differs from evaluation in that there is no judgment or grading of the skill.
Asset-Based: An asset-based approach sees youth as resources and agents of change, rather than problems to be fixed or passive consumers of services. The asset-based approach identifies factors youth need to achieve healthy adulthood, and sets program goals in terms “building assets” rather than “reducing risks.”
Attendance Rate: Rate of school attendance as calculated by the Oregon Department of Education.
At-Risk Youth: Refers to young people for whom the probability of successfully transitioning to adulthood and achieving economic self-sufficiency is low, based on social and emotional factors such as chronic poverty, drug use, poor school attendance and performance, rate of food insecurity, etc.
Best Practice: A practice that promotes high quality standards of afterschool programming. It is research based and evaluated to show a positive impact on child and youth outcomes.
Champions: Private sector, governmental, and foundation leaders who can provide financial and marketing leadership at the local and state levels in support of afterschool programs. Champions bring resources, influence, and advocacy to bear for programs across the state.
Chief Education Office: The Oregon Chief Education Office, chaired by the Chief Education Officer, oversees an effort to create a seamless, unified system for investing in and delivering public education from early childhood through high school and college, so that all Oregonians are well prepared for careers in our economy.
Child/Youth Outcomes: What children and/or youth are expected to know and be able to do as a result of participating in an activity, lesson, program, or event.
Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP): A Federal program that provides healthy meals and snacks to children and adults receiving care in group day care homes, emergency shelters, at-risk afterschool care centers, and childcare centers. It plays a vital role in improving the quality of day care and making it affordable for many low-income families.
Collective Impact: A methodology for addressing social issues articulated by John Kania and Mark Kramer that involves cooperation and commitment from various sectors, working toward a common goal.
College and Career Readiness: The level of preparation a student needs in order to enroll and succeed without remediation in a credit-bearing course at a post-secondary institution that offers a baccalaureate degree or transfer to a baccalaureate program. Also includes high-quality certificate programs that enables students to enter a career pathway with potential future advancement.
Common Core: The Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSSI) is an education initiative in the United States that details what K-12 students should know and do in English Language Arts and Mathematics at the end of each grade.
Communities of Color: Persons from communities of a particular racial representation, including African-American, Hispanic/Latino, Native American, Alaska Native, American Indian, Asian, Pacific Islander, and mixed races.
Community: A self-identified collective of individuals, aligned with one or more local jurisdictional boundaries for the purposes of data indicator assessment and tracking.
Community Based Grant: Grants designated for programs, services, and initiatives in communities.
Community School: A community school has 1) a philosophy of providing integrated services that meet the academic, health, and social needs of children, youth, families, and the community; 2) a physical location where these integrated services are provided; and 3) the group of organizations collaborating to provide the services. Schools Uniting Neighborhoods (SUN) Service System is an example of this type of program in Oregon.
Community Service: Voluntary work designed to benefit the public or public institutions.
Completion Rate: Rate of school completion as calculated by the Oregon Department of Education.
Confidentiality: Respecting and protecting the privacy of information related to the children, youth, families, and colleagues in a program.
Contextual Learning: Refers to learning through interaction with and interpretation of environments. Contextual learning is anchored in the context of real-life situations and problems.
Continuity: Activities or programs that display enough support over time to allow the participants to build content and skills mastery. Participants also have access to guidance and support to learn about the real-world applications of the skills they are learning and what they must do to acquire these skills.
Consumers: The children, youth, and families who access afterschool programs and activities in local communities.
Core Competencies: Core competencies are knowledge and skills that can be measured to assess effectiveness of a professional. They can be used to develop professional development plans. The afterschool field has identified nine core competencies for afterschool programs and professionals. These competencies are:
- Activities, Curriculum and Environment
- Youth Development and Engagement
- Diversity and Inclusion
- Families, Communities and Schools
- Health, Safety and Nutrition
- Highly Skilled Personnel
- Program Management
Core Body of Knowledge: The agreed upon information that professionals in the field of afterschool need to know in order to be effective and provide high quality services. The Core Body of Knowledge outlines the training and education that is essential for on-going professional development by identifying, defining, and setting standards for introductory, intermediate, and advanced levels of knowledge in 10 Core Knowledge Categories:
- Families & Community Systems
- Health, Safety & Nutrition
- Human Growth & Development
- Learning Environments & Curriculum
- Observation & Assessment
- Personal, Professional & Leadership Development
- Program Management
- Special Needs
- Understanding & Guiding Behavior
Community Based Training: Professional development that is presented by a qualified trainer outside of the college system.
Cultural Awareness: The ability to learn and integrate background histories, traditions and learning styles in relationship to race, culture, ethnic background and language preference. Every individual is rooted in culture. Components of culture (a) Culture has an influence on the beliefs and behaviors of everyone, (b) Culture is passed from generation to generation, (c) Culture is dynamic and changes according to the contemporary environment (d) Home language is a key component to identity formation.
Culturally Relevant Activities: Creative and art-oriented activities that connect to the cultural experiences, diverse learning styles, and self-expression of all students.
Cultural Competence: Refers to an ability to interact effectively with people of different cultures and socio-economic backgrounds, particularly in the context of non-profit organizations and public agencies who work with persons from different cultural/ethnic backgrounds. Cultural competence comprises four components: (a) awareness of one’s own cultural worldview, (b) understanding of cultural differences, (c) knowledge of different cultural practices and worldviews, and (d) cross-cultural skills. Developing cultural competence results in an ability to understand, communicate with, and effectively interact with people across cultures.
Culturally Appropriate: The ability of an organization or program to be effective across cultures, including the ability to honor and respect the beliefs, language, interpersonal styles, and behaviors of individuals and families receiving services.
Culturally Responsive: The ability of individuals, groups, or organizations to be responsive in continuously identifying and addressing embedded racial inequities in policies, programs, and practices to ensure alignment to the key beliefs in the State of Oregon Equity Lens; including the ability to honor and respect the beliefs, language, interpersonal styles, and behaviors of diverse service recipients.
Data Sharing: The practice of public agencies and schools sharing individual student information with afterschool and youth development programs in order to individualize learning strategies and focus supports to improve youth outcomes.
Digital Literacy: The ability to effectively and critically navigate, evaluate, and create information using a range of digital technologies.
District Enrollment: Number of students enrolled in a given district as calculated by the Oregon Department of Education.
Diversity: Diversity refers to the wide range of dimensions around which people in our society differ. These dimensions include race, culture, language, gender, religion, class, age, gender identity or expression, and mental/physical ability. Honoring Diversity in afterschool programs means seeing differences as opportunities, not as problems. It involves understanding, respecting, and incorporating the wide range of experiences young people bring to afterschool programs. It means creating inclusive environments where people of all backgrounds feel welcome and valued.
Dropout: A dropout is a student who withdrew from school and did not graduate or transfer to another school leading to a credential.
Economic Inequities: The inequitable distribution and allocation of resources needed to address the educational, health, and social service needs of the most vulnerable populations due to disproportionate representation at policy and decision making venues.
Education System: The collection of institutions, public and private, that operate within the framework of the Oregon Department of Education and the Oregon Education Investment Board.
Engagement: Engagement refers to elements that allow children and youth to develop their interest and motivation over time in creative ways. Engagement can be displayed through a variety of methods (e.g., behavioral, emotional, cognitive, vocational).
Enrichment Program: Enrichment activities expand on students’ learning in ways that differ from the methods used during the school day. They often are interactive and project-focused. They enhance a student’s education by bringing new concepts to light or by using old concepts in new ways. These activities are fun for the student, but they also impart knowledge.
Equity: Equity means each person or group is treated fairly and has equal access to economic, social, and educational opportunity. For members of groups that have been excluded from resources, equity may involve providing greater resources to compensate for past exclusion and discrimination. In afterschool, providing equitable access means young people and their families can fully participate in programs without facing physical, financial, emotional, cultural or other barriers. Equity also involves offering programming which:
- Includes and reflects the communities served
- Seeks to reduce social and academic disparities between groups
- Challenges stereotypes and inequities
- Draws upon the input and decision-making of participants and their families and communities
Equity Lens: The purpose of the Oregon Equity Lens, adopted April 9, 2013, is to articulate shared goals, intentional investments, clear accountability structures, and to confirm the importance of recognizing institutional barriers and discriminatory practices. It has a particular focus on underserved students, out-of-school youth, ELL, some students of color, and some rural geographical locations.
Evidence-Based Practices: A practice, regimen, or service that is grounded in consistent scientific evidence showing that it improves outcomes. Elements of the practice are standardized, replicable, and effective within a given setting and for particular group of participants.
Expanded Learning Opportunity (ELO): The term Expanded Learning Opportunity refers to before and after school, summer, and inter-session learning programs that focus on developing the academic, social, emotional, and physical needs and interests of students through engaging, hands-on learning experiences. Expanded Learning programs should be student-centered, results-driven, include community partners, use program standards, and complement but not replicate learning activities in the regular school day/year.
Experiential Learning Approach: Experiential learning approach refers to learning through reflection on doing, which is often contrasted with rote or didactic learning experienced in most educational settings. Experiential learning activities are among the most powerful teaching and learning tools available, requiring self-initiative, an “intention to learn” and an “active phase of learning”. They are structured, intentional, and creative learning activities that build linkages with schools to align and expand learning opportunities. They provide a range of activities in various subjects including STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), the arts (visual, drama, music, literature), service learning, civic engagement, leadership, citizenship, and 21st century skills.Many AYD programs use the experiential learning approach as a successful way to engage participants. Also, see project-based/problem-based.
Extended/Expanded Learning Time (ELT): School-based models that extend the traditional school day and calendar year in order to provide additional instructional time. Critically different from Expanded Learning Opportunities, which provide experiential learning opportunities outside of the regular school day.
Family: Includes all persons whom are responsible for and involved with the child/youth and who the child/youth identifies as having a long-term impact on their lives, including but not limited to parents, guardians, custodial siblings, and grandparents.
Family Engagement: The shared responsibility in which schools and other community agencies and organizations are committed to reaching out to engage families in meaningful ways, and in which families are committed to actively supporting their children’s learning and development. Effective family engagement reinforces learning in multiple settings — at home, in prekindergarten programs, in school, in afterschool programs, in faith-based institutions, and in the community.
Food Insecurity: Defined as the limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate or safe foods, or limited or uncertain ability to acquire acceptable foods in socially acceptable ways.
Free and Reduced Price Lunch Eligible: Children of households whose income is at or below 185% of the federal poverty guidelines. Often abbreviated as FRL
Front Line Staff: Leaders, teachers, assistants and aides who work directly with children and youth to implement program elements and/or activities.
Global Literacy: International knowledge, skills, and perspectives that are woven into afterschool activities such as games, reading, and art, or cooking.
Historically Underserved: Currently, Oregon has several targeted initiatives to serve historically underserved students which includes students of color, students in poverty, students with disabilities, and English language learners.
Homeless Student: A child or youth who lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence.
Homework Assistance: Tutoring or assistance with qualified staff in a designated space and time with links to school, teachers, students, and families.
Idle Youth: Youth not living in group quarters who have not been enrolled in school for three months and are not in the labor force.
Indicators (Community): Community level data points that track measures of social progress.
Indicators (Individual): Personal level data points that track measures of individual progress.
Intentional Programming: Creating learning and experiential opportunities targeted to support identified needs of children and youth in AYD programs.
Juvenile Referral Rate: The rate of law enforcement reports to juvenile departments alleging one or more felony or misdemeanor acts.
Limited English Proficient: Individuals who do not speak English as their primary language and who have a limited ability to read, speak, write, or understand English can be limited English proficient, or “LEP.”
Literacy Enhancements: A variety of materials available for reading, such as books, newspapers, magazines, books on tape etc. in the languages of the children and youth in the program. Also includes program activities that assist children and youth in developing literacy skills.
Mentor/Mentoring: Refers to a developmental relationship in which a more experienced or more knowledgeable person offers a less experienced or less knowledgeable person guidance, support, and encouragement in order to help them develop in a specified capacity.
Model program: A program that successfully implements one or more best practices, meets the standards of a high quality afterschool program, and serves as an example for other programs to learn from.
Motivational Resilience: Enthusiastic hard work and persistence in the face of challenging coursework.
Opportunity Youth: Youth age 16 to 24 who are neither enrolled in school nor participating in the labor force.
On-time Graduation: A student graduates on-time if he/she receives a high school diploma within four years of starting 9th grade.
Opportunity Gap: Refers to the ways in which race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, English proficiency, community wealth, familial situations, or other factors contribute to or perpetuate lower educational aspirations, achievement, and attainment for certain groups of students.
Outcome: A final product or end result for children and youth, such as academic, social, or health etc.
Out-of-School Time: Refers to the non-school time periods for school-age children and adolescents, during which there is often a need for school-age child care and other types of expanded learning opportunities. You can also use afterschool or expanded learning opportunities.
Partners: The agencies, organizations, and other community members who work together to provide financial support and other resources that work towards a common goal.
Positive Youth Development (PYD): A philosophical approach to working with young people that includes empowering the youth to be a resource to their communities; working with youth rather than for them; and involving young people in all stages of decision-making. Goals and outcomes are based on the capacities, strengths, and developmental needs of the young people.
Priority Youth: Youth aged 16 to 24 who are at risk of disconnecting from the education system, already disconnected from the education system, or are at risk from being able to transition successfully to the labor force.
Professional Development: The advancement of skills or expertise through continued education.
Promising Practice: An action that a program has done that, based on repetition and experience, has shown to provide a positive outcome.
Program Administrator: Someone at a high level of supervision. This person may not necessarily work directly with children and youth, but oversee those who supervise programs directly.
Quality Rating Improvement System (QRIS): Provides a common set of expectations and standards to define and measure the quality of early learning settings. The Quality Standards promote and support comprehensive facility quality and help ensure that quality practices are having a direct impact on individual children’s progress.
Quality Standards: A set of agreed-on benchmarks that after-school programs identify as being important to their success. They also serve as guides to continuous improvement and accountability.
Qualitative Evaluation: Qualitative evaluation methods yield narrative data – often describing experiences, perceptions, or opinions – that are less easily summarized in numerical form. Content analysis is the most common way of analyzing qualitative data. Qualitative data add detail, depth, and meaning to quantitative data.
Quantitative Evaluation: Quantitative evaluation methods yield numerical data that are typically analyzed using statistical methods.
Racial Bias: Prejudicial opinions about particular groups because of their race.
Racial Equity: The fair allocation of opportunity and resources, regardless of race and ethnicity, and no more than a fair share of society’s burdens within systems and settings that support rather than undermine positive development. Put into practice, this would mean that all people, including youth and adults of color, have: genuine voice in policy agenda-setting and decision making; real opportunity in the opportunity marketplaces of employment, housing, and education; equal opportunity to build wealth and invest in the future; no disproportionate concentration of environmental hazards, involvement in the juvenile justice system, poor health conditions, and other negative factors; and access to systems and settings that incorporate the features that maximize positive development, as identified by developmental scientists.
Racial Inequities: Proven by data, children and youth of color are more likely to experience high unemployment, poor educational opportunities, and less access to adequate health care because of the color of their skin.
Racial Profiling: The discriminatory practice by law enforcement, public agencies, businesses, community groups, and elected officials of targeting individuals for suspicion of crime, of unequal hiring practices, and of educational tracking based on an individual’s race, ethnicity, religion, or national origin.
Research Best Practices: Research that: (1) employs systematic methods that draw on observation or experiment; (2) involves data analyses that are adequate to test the stated hypotheses and justify the general conclusions drawn; (3) relies on measurements or observational methods that provide reliable and valid data; (4) is evaluated using experimental designs in which individuals, entities, programs, or activities are assigned to different conditions and with appropriate controls to evaluate the effects of the condition of interest; (5) ensures that experimental studies are presented in sufficient detail and clarity to allow for replication; (6) has been accepted by a peer-reviewed journal or approved by a panel of independent experts through a comparably rigorous, objective, and scientific review.
Safe Space (place): Afterschool and youth development programs offer children and youth a safe space: a non-judgmental, respectful, and nurturing environment where children and youth can freely share thinking, receive learning, and practice social skills without fears for physical, emotional, and social safety.
School-age: This term is primarily used to refer to children from 5-12 years of age. In Oregon we use the term to include children and youth from 5 – 21 years.
School-Community Partnerships: Are collaborations that weave together resources and strategies to enhance caring communities that support all youth and their families and enable success at school and beyond. Comprehensive partnerships represent a promising direction for generating essential interventions to address barriers to learning, enhance healthy development, and strengthen families and neighborhoods.
Service Learning: A combination of structured learning and service to the community that promotes personal development and civic responsibility. Includes structured time for students to plan service projects beforehand, and time for personal reflection after the project is complete.
Site Supervisor/Director: The person who directly oversees program activities, staff, children, and families.
Site Staff: Leaders, teachers, assistants, and aides who work directly with children and youth to implement program elements and/or activities.
Social Development Activities: Activities that help children and youth develops friendships and other relationships, as well as how a child handles conflict with peers. Social development activities support how youth learn to interact with others around them. As they develop and perceive their own individuality within their community, they also gain skills to communicate with other people and process their actions.
Social-Emotional Learning (SEL): A process for learning life skills, including how to deal with oneself, others and relationships, and work in an effective manner. In dealing with oneself, SEL helps in recognizing our emotions and learning how to manage those feelings. In dealing with others, SEL helps with developing sympathy and empathy for others, and maintaining positive relationships. SEL also focuses on dealing with a variety of situations in a constructive and ethical manner. SEL is commonly referred as “non-cognitive skills”, “21st Century skills”, character development, etc.
Social-Emotional Skills: Includes emotional maturity, empathy, interpersonal skills, and verbal and non-verbal communication. Social-Emotional skills are considered an important part of a child’s skills and dispositions, influencing the overall behavior of a person. Social-Emotional Skills are also referred as “non-cognitive skills”, “21st Century skills”, character development, etc.
Statewide Assessments: The statewide assessments administered through the Oregon Department of Education at selected grades, designed to show a student’s progress toward meeting content standards.
STEM: Refers to the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, and is often used in education policy and curriculum content. STEM Education aims to increase interest and competency in STEM related careers. STEAM, with an added “A,” includes Arts in addition to the other fields.
Structural Racism: A system in which public policies, institutional practices, cultural representations, and other norms work in various, often reinforcing, ways to perpetuate racial group inequity.
Student Centered Learning: Student-centered learning is an approach to education focusing on the interests of the students, rather than those of others involved in the educational process, such as teachers and administrators.
Students with Disabilities: Students who require accommodations or adaptations because of autism; communication disorders; deaf/blindness; emotional disturbances; orthopedic impairments; other health impairments; specific learning disabilities; traumatic brain injuries; or visual impairments, including blindness.
Subcontractors: Subcontractors are a type of partner that provides activities or services under contract.
Summer Food Service Program: The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) was established to ensure that low-income children continue to receive nutritious meals when school is not in session. Free meals, that meet Federal nutrition guidelines, are provided to all children 18 years old and under at approved SFSP sites in areas with significant concentrations of low-income children.
Summer Learning: High quality academic and enrichment activities that take place in the summer, and that aim to reduce learning loss over the summer months. Often targeted towards low-income students in order to reduce the academic achievement gap between high-income and low-income students.
Supplement not Supplant: Under the federal “supplement not supplant” requirement, 21st CCLC grantees may use grant funds only to supplement and to the extent practical, increase the level of funds that would, in the absence of federal funds, be made available from non-federal sources for the education of participating students.
Sustainability: A fiscal model that includes revenue and non-financial resources that meet the financial requirements to operate a program past short term funding streams. A program is sustainable if it has sufficient resources to operate its activities.
Stakeholders: The agencies, organizations, and individuals who administer and staff Afterschool services and programs in local communities.
Tutoring/Homework Help: These activities provide direct assistance with classroom work. Tutors or teachers help students complete their homework, prepare for tests, and work specifically on concepts covered during the school day.
Under-served Races/Ethnicities: As defined by the Oregon Education Investment Board Equity Lens, students whom societal systems have placed at risk because of their race, ethnicity, English language proficiency, socioeconomic status, gender, sexual orientation, differently abled, and geographic location.
World of Work: The arena of paid and non-paid employment, educational endeavors, and vocational efforts, which over a lifetime become a career.
Youth Development: A program for young people (generally early adolescent through teen) that focuses on assisting their growth and development in one or more domains of development such as physical & motor, social, emotional, character/moral, spiritual, and cognitive.
Youth Worker: One of the terms currently used to refer to people who work directly with children and/or youth in a wide range of afterschool programs.
Youth Quality Program Assessment (YPQA): The Youth Program Quality Assessment (PQA)® is a validated instrument designed to measure the quality of youth programs and identify staff training needs. The Youth PQA is suitable for youth in grades 4 – 12. For children in grades K – 6, the School-Age PQA is developmentally appropriate.