The Idaho Out-of-School Network believes that every child should have the opportunity and support to reach their fullest potential. Idaho's future is brightest when we have a rising generation of lifelong learners who fuel an innovative and robust workforce, make healthy lifestyle choices, and feel emotionally and socially supported by their peers and communities.
Families are a child's core support system, however it takes more than one support system to raise successful youth. For example, while families or guardians work, many Idaho youth are left alone after school or during the summer. Providing youth with safe places and enrichment opportunities consistently during these times are especially challenging for families earning lower wages or those living in rural or remote areas, a barrier that not only may put their children in harm's way, but also one that prevents them being active or learning.
There just is not enough time in the school day.
Research shows that youth that have consistent access to out-of-school programs perform better academically, are more excited to learn, are more active and live healthier lifestyles, and are better socially and emotionally adjusted. If communities don't have ample, affordable out-of-school programs that all youth can access, we're missing an opportunity to support our rising generation in reaching their fullest potential.
This is why the Idaho Out-of-School Network is driven to ensure that all Idaho youth have access to high-quality out-of-school programs. The Network is a unique statewide initiative that connects, educates, and empowers our program providers, families, policy makers, business leaders and other community partners to expand and enrich out-of-school programs and opportunities.
The Network connects families to local programs that keep youth safe, active, and learning about what interests them. The Networks equips program providers with cutting-edge curriculum and effective practices that engage and inspire youth and to help our kids build the skills they will need for the jobs of tomorrow. The Network empowers advocates with the stories, data and research to build awareness and support for out-of-school programming. And they bring communities together, identify shared goals, learn about needs and collaborate on ways to find the resources (funding, space, transportation, staff, etc.) that make programming possible.
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