FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 20, 2005
MAYOR BLOOMBERG ANNOUNCES THE LAUNCH OF
OUT-OF-SCHOOL TIME INITIATIVE
New System to Deliver an Array of High-Quality Programs to
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Department of Youth and Community
Development (DYCD) Commissioner Jeanne B. Mullgrav today announced the launch of
the City's new Out-of-School Time (OST) initiative, a three-year, $200 million
initiative that will provide a mix of academic, recreational and cultural
activities for young people after school, during holidays and in the summer. T
he new OST system consists of over 550 programs free of cost, in every
neighborhood across the City. The programs, which are operated by 200
community-based organizations, are located in schools, community centers,
settlement houses, religious centers, cultural organizations, libraries, public
housing facilities, and Parks Department facilities. OST will serve more than
47,000 elementary, middle and high school students this school year, and is
expected to grow substantially to serve at least 65,000 next September. These
new programs are the product of reforms designed to make OST better targeted,
more comprehensive, more accountable, and better integrated with the overall
education reform goals. Joining Mayor Bloomberg at PS/MS 27 in Red Hook,
Brooklyn were the principal at PS/MS 27 Sara Belcher-Barnes, Senior Counselor to
the Chancellor for Education Policy Michele Cahill, the Mayor's Special Advisor
for Governance and Strategic Planning Ester Fuchs, Administration for Children
Services Deputy Commissioner Ajay Chaudry, Chairman of the New York City Housing
Authority Tino Hernandez, Department of Parks and Recreation Commissioner Adrian
Benepe, Department of Cultural Affairs Commissioner Kate Levin and Executive
Director of Good Shepherd Services Sister Paulette LoMonaco.
"Our new Out-of-School Time system will better serve children and
working parents by engaging youth at precisely times of the day when they are
likely to be home alone or are most vulnerable," said Mayor Bloomberg. "For
these young people, the learning and growing will continue even after the school
bell has rung. This reform has been long overdue."
"The children of New York deserve the highest quality services
during non-school hours and that is exactly what we have set out to do with this
new system," said Commissioner Mullgrav. "We have adopted best practices from
across the country to deliver comprehensive programs that help our young people
develop socially, academically and emotionally in a supportive environment."
The announcement coincides with Lights on Afterschool!, a
nationwide celebration, launched in October 2000. Lights on
Afterschool! calls attention to the importance of afterschool programs for
America's children, families and communities.
Lights On Afterschool! is a project of the Afterschool
Alliance, a nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring that all children have
access to quality, affordable afterschool programs by 2010.
The OST system is a model of interagency coordination as it
reaches into every corner of the City and consolidates services from a multitude
of City agencies. For example, the Department of Education (DOE) is hosting 60%
of all OST programs in public schools and will contribute a range of services,
including security and healthy snacks. Other programs are located in New York
City Housing Authority facilities, in Parks and Recreation facilities and in
Public Libraries. Additional resources are coming from the Department of Health
and Mental Hygiene and the Department of Cultural Affairs.
The City's new OST system is strengthened through several public-private
partnerships. The Wallace Foundation supported the OST planning process and is
providing a five-year $12 million grant. OST is also supported through
partnerships with The Clark Foundation, the Partnership for After-School
Education, Policy Studies Associates, Inc., the Citizen's Committee for Children
and the Fund for the City of New York.
"The City's new Out-of-School Time system-based on an analysis of where
current services are provided, market research among parents and children,
quality standards, and wide-ranging community input - lays a strong foundation
for improving services to children and youth, particularly those most in need,"
said President of The Wallace Foundation Christine DeVita. "Approaches pioneered
here will provide valuable lessons for other cities around the nation seeking to
develop more effective out-of-school time systems."
System-wide changes have brought OST programs to neighborhoods and
communities that traditionally have been underserved. High-need areas were
pinpointed by analyzing five demographic variables: youth population; youth
poverty rate; rate of youth ages 16-19 years who are not in school, not high
school graduates, and not in the labor force; number of English Language Learner
students in public schools; and the number of single parent families with
related children under 18. 60% of programs were opened in 58 high-need zip codes
in the City. In total, there will be 118 OST programs in the Bronx, 194 in
Brooklyn, 118 in Manhattan, 105 in Queens and 23 in Staten Island. OST programs
form the core of New York City's youth programming, which includes a broad
spectrum of more than 1,400 City-funded after school programs in total.
Building on his commitment to improving the education system, Mayor Bloomberg
began the OST reform initiative in the fall of 2003, inviting 200 community
leaders and representatives from City Agencies, community organizations, parent
groups and foundations to attend an OST summit. Working groups drafted plans for
quality standards and a streamlined infrastructure. After an open and
competitive review process of proposals, hundreds of programs were funded,
bringing an array of new OST activities to youth across the City, including
areas which were previously underserved, such as the Rockaways and Staten
Families can find OST and other youth programs in their neighborhood,
including program hours, ages served and types of activities either online at www.nyc.gov/dycd or by dialing the
City's 311 information line.
||Edward Skyler / Silvia Alvarez
||Michael Ognibene ( DYCD )