CPPR’s Kansas Enrichment Network partnering for two-state municipal summit on afterschool, expanded learning

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

June 4, 2016, 9:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m., Kauffman Foundation Conference Center
4801 Rockhill Road, Kansas City, Mo.
#KSMO4afterschool  #KUworks  #KUcommunities

LAWRENCE – A statewide project of a University of Kansas-based research center is partnering with colleagues in Missouri to assemble city leaders and state agency officials from across both states for an early-June municipal summit focused on improving and expanding afterschool and summer learning opportunities for young people.

Based at the Center for Public Partnerships & Research (CPPR) in KU’s Achievement & Assessment Institute, the Kansas Enrichment Network (KEN) will join with the Missouri AfterSchool Network and the United Way of Greater Kansas City to present “Strengthening Opportunities for Youth, Creating Opportunities for Cities: The Power of Afterschool and Expanded Learning.”

The June 4 event at the Kauffman Foundation Conference Center in Kansas City, Mo., will emphasize afterschool learning’s proven, positive links to workforce readiness and promotion of healthy lifestyles, as well as the reduction of risky behavior including juvenile crime and high school dropout rates.

Mayor Sly James of Kansas City, Mo., and Mayor Peggy Dunn of Leawood, Kan., will host the event, with Reginald McGregor of the Rolls-Royce Corporation providing the keynote address. The summit will feature panels with some of the region’s top afterschool experts and city leaders, who will discuss the value of afterschool programs and the key role municipal leaders play in ensuring opportunities for youth outside of the school day.

“We are thankful for the opportunity to work with the United Way of Greater Kansas City and the Missouri AfterSchool Network to engage in a conversation about how to create effective out-of-school-time systems,” said KEN Director Marcia Dvorak, an assistant director at CPPR. “We believe out-of-school time could be the silver lining for our communities. We hope to leave the summit with new Mayoral Champions of afterschool to help us elevate the policy conversation throughout our state, and join us in advocating for local, state and federal policies that support youth opportunities in our communities.”

At last fall’s inaugural Afterschool STEM Summit in Washington, D.C., the National League of Cities (NLC) selected seven statewide afterschool networks (SANs) to receive technical and financial assistance to host statewide municipal summits on afterschool and expanded learning in 2016. All of the afterschool networks will partner with mayoral champions to host the summits, with technical assistance and support from the NLC. Each state summit is supported by a $9,000 grant funded by the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation and The Wallace Foundation.

These summits reflect a growing national movement of mayors, councilmembers and other elected officials who are taking the lead in their cities to develop and promote high-quality, citywide afterschool and summer-learning programs.

“Education, including the availability of meaningful learning opportunities outside of the classroom, is the most important issue facing our region,” said Mayor James. “To be truly great we have to have excellence across the board, including in our citywide afterschool programs.”

Other selected networks include the Alabama Afterschool Community Network, the Florida Afterschool Network, the Indiana Afterschool Network, the Massachusetts Afterschool Partnership and the Ohio Afterschool Network. The SANs are statewide organizations dedicated to improving policies, partnerships, funding, and quality of afterschool opportunities.  NLC has supported 19 state municipal summits over the past five years.

The municipal summit on afterschool and expanded learning will:

  • educate city leaders about the critical need for afterschool in their state;
  • engage mayors in helping to inform afterschool and expanded learning policies at the state level;
  • connect mayors and councilmembers with peers from across their state to develop strategic partnerships that advance afterschool and summer learning initiatives; and
  • highlight successful approaches to building citywide afterschool systems.

“I am extremely grateful that the National League of Cities is supporting the Kansas and Missouri Municipal Summit on Afterschool and Expanded Learning,” said Mayor Dunn. “Youth safety and engagement in extracurricular activities as well as assistance for working parents are of utmost importance. Gaining greater knowledge of best practices in afterschool opportunities and summer learning initiatives will be a tremendous outcome from this needed endeavor.”

Clifford Johnson, executive director of NLC’s Institute for Youth, Education, and Families, said summits will help city and state leaders work together more effectively to ensure that all children and youth have access to high-quality afterschool opportunities. “Afterschool programs are a powerful solution to not only keep young people safe,” Johnson said, “but also equip young people with the necessary interpersonal and workforce skills for a successful future.”

More about the Kansas Enrichment Network
The Kansas Enrichment Network (KEN) is dedicated to ensuring that all Kansas children and youth have access to safe, affordable and high-quality afterschool and expanded-learning programs. KEN is a collaboration of Kansas agencies and organizations that helps build and expand school-based programs to enhance learning opportunities for students, and provides technical assistance to new and established programs.

The Network envisions a state where all children and youth can participate in out-of-school activities that provide academic assistance and help working families. Out-of-school programs offer opportunities to engage youth and help them learn, grow and prepare for the future. KEN strives to raise awareness, build capacity and sustainability, and promote the importance of such programs.

More about CPPR
One of the KU Achievement & Assessment Institute’s four research centers, the Center for Public Partnerships & Research assists partners with addressing complex social issues through research and evaluation, systems development, professional development, technical assistance and performance management systems. CPPR currently has more than 50 grants in the areas of early childhood, child welfare, child-abuse prevention, K-12 education and at-risk families. CPPR staff members have extensive experience working collaboratively with state, federal, and community-based organizations to drive research, build capacity, and make big changes possible. Strong partnerships with the Kansas Children's Cabinet & Trust Fund, Kansas Department of Health & Environment, Kansas State Department of Education, and Kansas Health Foundation result in innovations, positive change, and support for at-risk children, youth and families across the state.


Media Contact
Bill Woodard
Communications Manager
Achievement & Assessment Institute
The University of Kansas
bwoodard@ku.edu  |  785-864-1680

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