A symposium will be held on Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve, a 30-thousand acre preserve with 150 miles of hiking trails. The symposium will be held at Scottsdale Community College and will bring together researchers, students, stakeholders, citizens and community leaders to share and learn about research in the preserve. John Weser, executive director of Scottsdale Community College's Center for Native and Urban Wildlife and Melanie Tluczek, McDowell Sonoran field institute manager, will tell us more about the symposium and the preserve.
Research shows that quality after-school programming has a positive impact on school attendance, achievement and the likelihood of graduation. Arizona was recently ranked in a national survey as being in the top ten of all states for after-school program support and parent satisfaction. Also, nearly 500 programs in our state signed a pledge to commit to using quality standards developed by the Arizona Center for Afterschool Excellence and the Valley of the Sun United Way. We’ll look at one after school program run by the city of Tempe, KidsZone. Also, Melanie McClintock, executive director of the Arizona Center for Afterschool Excellence, and Chad Geston, a former Camelback High School principal who integrated after-school activities and programs on that campus and saw dramatic results, will talk about the value of after-school programs.
The Arizona Center for Afterschool Excellence is proposing quality standards for out-of-school-time programs. The standards, “School’s Out, Make It Count: Arizona Quality Standards for Out-of-School Programs,” were produced in partnership with the Valley of the Sun United Way. They were based on statewide input from out-of-school time providers, educators, families, business leaders and policymakers. Melanie McClintock, executive director of the Center, will discuss the standards.