2016 -17 for one of the After School For All Partnership (ASAP) sites can be characterized by one word – CHANGE. The year began with the dismissal of the site manager, a relocation of their gathering room, and a new end of the school day dismissal location (the cafeteria) and the resulting modification to dinner and homework time. Over the next several weeks, staff came and left and a new site manager was hired, though her time was divided between this site and another. The ever changing personnel were not a cohesive group and were often uncertain of how to be effective in performing their job.
During the year, the staff attended the ASAP trainings that aided in their daily job performance – navigating adult relationships, appropriate adult/child interactions, the Road to Quality model, team building and developmentally appropriate programs. For this team, I consulted with them about their site specific needs and created training for them geared toward new youth workers. The training focused on positive youth work basics, methods and strategies. I also visited them six times for observation, coaching and to be a sounding board.
Throughout the year, the staff solidified as a team and the program began to flourish. They intentionally sought to improve relationships with the principal and school day staff. As a result, they were given full access to the library and a large storage area. Each staff share roles in order for the program to meet the needs of the children, families and the school. This strengthened, well trained team has been able to pass on strategies to the children in the program – facilitating as children resolve differences, modeling positive peer relations to encourage the same, and empowering them to take an actively role in curriculum and activities.
Want to learn more about the After School For All Partnership click here.