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Wallace Foundation, The;
In 2003, The Wallace Foundation began an initiative that eventually included five cities -- Boston, Chicago, New York City, Providence and Washington, D.C. -- to help them develop afterschool systems. At the time, a few cities and organizations were pioneering this approach (L.A.'s Best in Los Angeles, The After-School Corporation in New York, After School Matters in Chicago), but it was still a novelty. Five years later, Wallace examines lessons learned from this initiative, which posited two central premises:
Children and teens can gain learning and developmental benefits by frequent participation in high-quality afterschool programs.A coordinated approach can increase access to, and improve the quality of, afterschool programs.
Meals On Wheels America;
The national Meals on Wheels network continues to face limited funding, rising costs, unprecedented demand and need and increasing for-profit competition. That is why Meals on Wheels America set out to compare the experience and health outcomes realized by older adults who receive three different levels of service: daily traditional meal delivery, once-weekly frozen delivery and individuals on a waiting list.
This study, funded by AARP Foundation and conducted by researchers at Brown University, implemented a groundbreaking approach to investigating the impact of meal service delivery on homebound seniors receiving Meals on Wheels. The study's findings validate what we've all known for decades anecdotally through firsthand experience: that Meals on Wheels does in fact deliver so much more than just a meal.
Center for American Progress;
Profiles the goals, activities, implementation, and challenges of the twelve states that won Race to the Top federal funds to improve teacher quality and preparation program accountability; analyzes their strategies; and makes policy recommendations.
This executive summary highlights the main findings from our participation and outcomes analysis of the AfterZone initiative a citywide system-building effort in Providence, RI, that aims to provide high-quality, accessible out-of-school-time services to middle school youth.
Cultural Policy Center at The University of Chicago;
There have been remarkable advances in arts education, both in and out of schools, over the last fifteen years, despite a difficult policy environment. Teaching artists, the hybrid professionals that link the arts to education and community life, are the creative resource behind much of this innovation. Their best efforts are redefining the roles the arts play in public education. Their work is central to arts organizations' strategies for civic engagement and diverse audiences. Excellent research has shown that arts education is instrumental to the social, emotional, and cognitive development of thousands of young people. But little is known about teaching artists. The Teaching Artists Research Project (TARP) deepens our understanding of world of teaching artists through studies in twelve communities, and it will inform policy designed to make their work sustainable, more effective, and more meaningful.
A dozen study sites were selected where funding was available to support exploration of the local conditions and dynamics in arts education: Boston, Seattle, Providence, and eight California communities (San Francisco/Alameda County, Los Angeles, San Diego, Bakersfield, San Bernardino, Santa Cruz, Salinas, and Humboldt County). A thorough literature review was conducted, and NORC conducted stakeholder meetings and focus groups, identified key issues and began designing a multi-methods study that would include surveys for both artists and program managers as well as in-depth interviews of stakeholders -- teaching artists, program managers, school officials, classroom teachers and arts specialists, principals, funders, and arts educators in a wide variety of venues.
There are no professional associations and no accreditation for teaching artists, so a great deal of time was spent building a sample of teaching artists and program managers in every study site. The survey instrument was developed and tested, and then fielded on-line in the study sites sequentially, beginning in Chicago, and ending with the southern California sites. To assure a reliable response rate, online surveys were supplemented by a telephone survey. Lists of potential key informants were accumulated for each site, and interviewers were recruited, hired, and trained in each site. Most of the interviewers were teaching artists themselves, and many had significant field knowledge and familiarity with the landscape of arts education in their community. The surveys collected data on some fundamental questions:
Who are teaching artists?Where do they work? Under what terms and conditions?What sort of education have they had?How are they hired and what qualifications do employers look for?How much do they make?How much experience do they have?What drew them to the field? What pushes them out?What are their goals?Qualitative interviews with a subsample of survey respondents and key informants delved deeply into the dynamics and policies that drive arts education, the curricula and pedagogy teaching artists bring to the work, and personal histories of some artists. The interviews gathered more detailed information on the local character of teaching artist communities, in-depth descriptions and narratives of teaching artists' experiences, and followed up on items or issues that arose in preliminary analysis of the quantitative survey data. These conversations illuminated the work teaching artists believe is their best and identified the kinds of structural and organizational supports that enable work at the highest level. The interview process explored key areas with the artists, such as how to best develop their capacities, understand the dynamics between their artistic and educational practice, and how to keep them engaged in the field. Another critical topic explored during these conversations was how higher education can make a more meaningful and strategic contribution toward preparing young artists to work in the field.
The TARP report includes serious reflection on the conditions and policies that have affected arts education in schools, particularly over the last thirty years, a period of intense school reform efforts and consistent erosion of arts education for students. The report includes new and important qualitative data about teaching artists, documenting their educational background, economic status, the conditions in which they work, and their goals as artists and educators. It also includes new insights about how learning in the arts is associated with learning in general, illuminating findings from other studies that have suggested a powerful connection between arts education and positive outcomes for students in a wide range of domains.
Education Development Center;
Profiles eight Wallace-supported approaches to preparing future principals to succeed in improving troubled city schools, including establishing clear expectations so that university preparation programs can craft training accordingly.
Analyzes demographic, social, and poverty data and 2000-10 changes in the economies and housing markets of fourteen metropolitan areas to inform Casey's strategies for reinvesting in initiatives including rehabilitation and minimizing vacancies.
Presents findings from the National Neighborhood Indicators Partnership's community-level data analysis on services that improve physical and mental health, family stability, and neighborhood environments to foster collaboration for school readiness.
Analyzes indicators of metropolitan conditions and trends critical to transforming isolated low-income neighborhoods at ten sites: the economy and labor market, demographic change, income and poverty, social conditions, and housing and mortgage market.
Annie E. Casey Foundation;
Outlines Casey's support for efforts to place foreclosed properties into community land trusts, avoid eviction of renters, and mitigate foreclosures' effects. Lists other philanthropic options such as supporting research for solutions and direct services.
Analyzes findings from efforts at three sites to merge local- and state-level criminal justice and human services data to understand the impact of mothers' incarceration on children and their foster care outcomes. Discusses implications and challenges.
Leveraging Investments in Creativity (LINC);
Examines the process of developing and financing artist space projects, such as sources and uses of cash, subsidies, regulations, and zoning and building codes. Looks at risks, challenges, and solutions, and makes suggestions for funders and supporters.