The afterschool hours — great risk, great opportunity.
The afterschool hours — when school’s out and many parents are still working — are the time that children are most vulnerable to risky behaviors, crime and the dangers of the streets. These hours are also often a time when children in areas with the greatest needs and fewest resources fall further and further behind their more fortunate peers. It can be a time of missed chances to help students succeed in school and get equipped with the intellectual and social skills they’ll need in the future. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
For nearly 30 years, LA’s BEST has provided safe, supervised afterschool enrichment for elementary school students in neighborhoods with the highest needs and fewest resources.
But LA’s BEST has also been providing something more to young children at a critical point in their lives: Through our deliberately developed programming and staff, we build the kind of deep intellectual, creative, physical and social engagement in children that drives their development as motivated learners and active contributors to their education, schools and communities. This is reflected in concrete measures such as school attendance and graduation rates, and in equally critical measures of self-confidence, curiosity and wonder, and enhanced senses of purpose, drive and self-worth.Impact