Parenting | Education | Work/Life Balance

After-School Special: a ParentMap Special Series

New research shows all child-care and programming is not equal: It turns out, quality matters. Our 9-month series explores the effort to analyze the quality of youth care and uncovers organizations doing it right


In the scramble to find care and programs for their children, busy and cost-conscious parents do not always have the tools available to assess the quality of that care. Yet new research shows that all programming is not equal, and that the highest quality programming can lead to better outcomes for children and teens.

In this special 9-month series, we explore how new voluntary standards developed in Washington state by School's Out Washington are impacting the quality of after-school programs that serve about 134,000 youths after the school bell rings. Along the way we visit with organizations that are reshaping their programming and measuring success.

We help parents figure out what they should seek in a program, and we look at research on the impacts of quality care on kids’ development and academics. After-School Special’s independently reported content is funded by a journalism grant in partnership with the Raikes Foundation and School’s Out Washington.

Click through the slideshow and thumbnails below to access all the stories in our series.

Executive Editor Natalie Singer-Velush

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