Background & Approach
Background and impact
Since 2008, School’s Out Washington has led the effort to build and sustain a quality improvement system for expanded learning programs in Washington state. Our work is backed by research and incorporates the Youth Program Quality Intervention model developed by the Forum for Youth Investment’s David P. Weikart Center for Youth Program Quality.
With the support of multiple local, state, and national partners, we have supported over 650 programs through a continuous quality improvement process. Our approach includes coaching, training, assessment, and collaborative spaces for providers to authentically engage in growing their quality practices, structures, and systems.
Today, our focus is on enhancing our quality improvement offerings through:
- The development of a robust, statewide, accessible professional learning system
- The creation of responsive and inclusive pathways to quality improvement
- Partnerships with local communities to design, manage, and implement their own quality improvement systems
Our approach—youth-centered, relationship based, and multifaceted.
Our intention is to foster equity, inclusion, and cultural responsiveness. We support programs in making connections between high quality practices, continuous quality improvement processes, and the perspectives and lived experiences of young people and program staff.
Using the Youth Program Quality Intervention model (which includes the assess-plan-improve sequence), we work with programs to incorporate self-and external assessments, actionable improvement plans, and professional learning supports (i.e. coaching, training, and peer learning) to drive improvement.
Our professional learning system includes coaching and training aligned to the Washington State Core Competencies and Program Quality Standards for Afterschool and Youth Development Programs.