The National Center for Quality Afterschool

Helping local practitioners and state education agencies develop high-quality and balanced programs

About the Center

About the Center

About The National Center for Quality Afterschool

Photo of an afterschool staff member coloring with two young girls.

The National Center for Quality Afterschool helps state education agencies and local practitioners develop high-quality, balanced programs that provide a safe and fun environment for academic enrichment as well as youth development activities.

Contact Us

The National Center for Quality Afterschool
American Institutes for Research
4700 Mueller Blvd.
Austin, TX 78723
TEL: 800-476-6861
FAX: 512-476-2286

Lacy Wood, Principal Technical Assistance Consultant, 512-391-6567

Marion Baldwin, Senior Technical Assistance Consultant, 512-391-6503

Laura Shankland, Senior Technical Assistance Consultant, 512-391-6556

What We Do

The goal of the National Center for Quality Afterschool is to enhance the ability of afterschool programs to support student achievement by helping them embed high-quality academic content in engaging activities that attract and retain student participation. Our work consists principally of the following three types of activities.

Identify and Validate Promising Practices

The Center analyzes a variety of available data sources, including academic achievement measures, to identify sites demonstrating a positive effect on student learning.

Provide Assistance and Training

The Center sponsors or co-sponsors national and regional training events featuring experts in the area of program development and the use of high-quality, research-based instructional practices. Staff are also available to assist state education agencies and afterschool sites in the development of exemplary programs and to provide customized fee-for-service training.

Develop Resources

Using current research on promising practices, including data acquired from afterschool site visits, Center staff develop resources and tools to help practitioners create activities that support student learning. Our Afterschool Training Toolkit illustrates specific practices in literacy, mathematics, science, and the arts. This resource also provides strategies for integrating technology and assisting students with homework.

Online Training for Afterschool Staff
The Afterschool Training Toolkit is available online free of charge.

The following resources can be used with the online Afterschool Training Toolkit to give you the resources you need to build fun, innovative, and academically enriching afterschool activities.