As I emerge from the train station in the heart of San Francisco’s Mission District, my senses are overwhelmed with the sights, sounds, and smells of a bustling neighborhood. I’m in the Mission to provide coaching support to a program director at one of the community-based organizations in the neighborhood.
The Mission District is changing. The effects of gentrification and the housing crisis are visible everywhere. All my coaching clients in the neighborhood frequently mention the fears, vulnerability and active resistance of the immigrant community here. They do important and challenging work, and I’m painfully aware of my status as an outsider. So I step lightly, listen carefully and avoid giving any advice too quickly.
I’ve been in the after school and summer learning field for more than 15 years. I started with internships and line staff positions. I eventually became a Site Coordinator and continued to advance in the Expanded Learning field. I’ve been an advocate and a technical assistance provider, and now I’m privileged to be fundraising for an advocacy and capacity building organization focused on Expanded Learning. In each of these roles I’ve observed the opportunity provided by public moments. Like the Expanded Learning time equivalent of Back to School Night, “Lights on Afterschool” provides a powerful public moment for after school programs.
An inside look into the operating budgets of high-quality summer learning programs in California.
I authored and designed this report in 2016. The full print friendly report and infographic are free to download and related resources can be found at summermatters.net.
This week I will be presenting a workshop at Dare to Disrupt: The National Conference on After School and Summer Learning. My workshop is called Responsive Coaching Conversations that Empower Staff. It is part of the conference strand on Staff, Leadership, and Management.
Summer learning loss is holding back low income students. The summer months offer an opportunity to close the achievement gap, but don’t let your school district default to remedial summer school or credit recovery when a more engaging and meaningful learning opportunity exists.