Before-school and after-school programs are designed for children who need only a few hours of care during weekdays. Typically, these children are in primary grades (1 through 6) and need supervision before school starts or after it is over. These programs may be in private homes, schools, youth centers such as the YMCA, churches, or child care centers where younger children spend the entire day.
Some states license before-school and after-school programs. All staff of these programs, such as child care providers, cooks, and housekeepers, are usually required to have completed certain types of training.
Most after-school programs offer a wide variety of activities for children of all ages and interests. Some programs offer special activities, such as gymnastics. You can learn about what is offered in your area by talking with other parents and contacting local child-related organizations. Another good resource is Afterschool Alliance (www.afterschoolalliance.org.)
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