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- Map the OST field and synthesize the latest OST research and evaluation information to provide in-depth coverage of key topics in OST evaluation and practice. For example, we publish in-depth examinations of important OST topics through our Issues and Opportunities in Out-of-School Time Evaluation series.
- Strengthen OST evaluation practice by scanning and distilling the latest information on evaluation methodology. For example, we produce short, accessible OST Evaluation Snapshots and Research Updates, which highlight evaluation methods and findings culled from our OST Program Research and Evaluation Database.
- Conduct original research on and analysis of “hot topics” in OST and apply those findings to improve OST policy and practice. For example, our Study of Predictors of Participation in Out-of-School Time Activities revealed a significant pattern in who participates in OST, allowing us to make practice and policy recommendations for improving access to OST activities and programs.
- Network, convene, and collaborate with local, state, and national organizations and intermediaries to promote best practices in OST evaluation and program practice. In order to maximize our reach, many of our OST conference presentations are available in the Publications & Resources section of our website.
- Build evaluation and program capacity through the development of tools and “how to” guides. For example, our guide to engaging families in OST programs, Focus on Families! How to Build and Support Family-Centered Practices in After School, contains practical information and advice on how to strengthen after school programs’ family engagement practices.