Childlinks Issue 3: School Age Programmes

Barnardos. (2006). Childlinks Issue 3: School Age Programmes.
This edition of Childlinks is devoted to the theme of School Age Programmes. For many years Barnardos has provided out-of-school activities as part of an integrated model of community-based family support projects. Recently, as part of our advocacy work. on educational disadvantage, we recommended the introduction of comprehensive out-of-school activities for all children, particularly those who are disadvantaged. In a series of articles, this edition of Childlinks aims to examine the topic from both Irish and international experience. Dr Paul Downes writes on behalf of QDOSS, which is calling for a national strategy on out-of-school services ~ a strategy that is sensitive to the needs of local contexts. It is interesting to learn about the United States experience of out-of-school time (OST) programmes. According to Bouffard, Little and Weiss, the debate has moved beyond the question of whether Out-of-School Time programmes matter to questions about why, how and for whom they matter: Stakeholders now acknowledge that youth need access to not just any programmes, but to well-designed, high-quality programmes. Mary Maloney of Limerick City Childcare Committee gives an informative overview of the development of school-age childcare in Ireland and, in particular an account of the innovative work carried out by Limerick City Childcare Committee in this area. Two evaluations of After School work are included which provide insights into the topic from the perspectives of children, young people, parents, staff and teachers. Finally, there is an account of the development of a new Fetac award in School Age Childcare, which is being coordinated by a collaboration of childcare and training agencies.