The Philadelphia ost project

Building an Out-of-School Time (OST)
System of Systems

Check out the new project website: PhillyBOOST

" All Philadelphia children and youth will have access to high-quality, age-appropriate, out-of-school time (OST) programs and activities that promote their education, safety, development and successful transition into adulthood; and as a result, enrich families, neighborhoods and communities." Philadelphia OST Vision Statement, 2009

The City of Philadelphia is committed to a variety of high quality and culturally-sensitive afterschool opportunities for all youth citywide. The City recognizes the diversity and autonomy of existing programs and funding streams and simultaneously imagines a coordinated system of programs that utilizes reliable information to continuously enhance program quality and youth participation.

With support from The Wallace Foundation, the William Penn Foundation, and the United Way of Greater Philadelphia & South New Jersey, and Mayor Michael A. Nutter, the City is embarking on a 3-year project to “Build an OST System of Systems” that will help move us toward that vision. Philadelphia's project is one of nine cities funded by The Wallace Foundation’s Next Generation OST Initiative. Locally, the Project Lead is Tom Sheaffer, Director of Policy & Evaluation/Fiscal Director in the Deputy Mayor's Office for Health & Opportunity.

To assist with the Philadelphia effort, this website will keep the entire community informed of our progress and to engage anyone wishing to participate in the project’s Work Groups (“Assessment & Outcomes,” “Data,” and “Coordination”). The project’s website is housed within the website of our partner agency, the Out of School Time Resource Center (OSTRC) at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy & Practice. We chose the OSTRC site because of the wealth of OST information and assistance that is already embedded there and readily accessible to all those in the field. We hope our readers take full advantage of the multiple resources available to programs, staff, families, children, and youth.

The site’s design has several sections that should help both frequent and one-time visitors. We have included a description of the city’s OST “landscape,” up-to-the-minute information pertaining to the project’s Work Groups, background information on the city’s proposal and project work plan, links to other useful websites, project accomplishments, and a list of upcoming activities and events relevant to the project’s objectives. We invite you to make full use of the site’s entire contents and to offer suggestions and other feedback by e-mailing OSTProject@phila.gov.