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New Study Finds Tremendous Unmet Need for Afterschool Programs in the Latinx Community, With 6.5 Million Hispanic Children Without the Access to Afterschool Their Parents Want

WASHINGTON, D.C. / AGILITYPR.NEWS / January 13, 2021 /






NEWS RELEASE                           CONTACT:    Lisa Lederer

January 13, 2021                                202/421-5825


New Study Finds Tremendous Unmet Need for Afterschool Programs in the Latinx Community, With 6.5 Million Hispanic Children Without the Access to Afterschool Their Parents Want


WASHINGTON, DC Satisfaction with afterschool programs has reached a new high among Latinx parents, but limited access, unmanageable costs, and other barriers are preventing many Hispanic students from participating. A new household survey commissioned by the Afterschool Alliance and conducted by Edge Research finds that, for every Hispanic child in an afterschool program today, three more are waiting to get in.


America After 3PM finds that the families of 24.6 million children in the United States more than ever before are unable to access an afterschool program and many report that cost is a barrier. America After 3PM exposes significant inequities, with the parents of 55% of Latinx, 58% of Black, and 46% of white children not currently in an afterschool program saying they would enroll their child if they could.


The new study finds that, due to barriers including access, cost, and transportation, the number of Latinx children in afterschool programs has declined from 3.8 million in 2014 to less than 2.3 million today. The decline means more Hispanic students are without the critical supports that can help them succeed. It also signals that, while publicly funded afterschool programs have helped millions of students, public dollars are not nearly sufficient to keep up with demand today.


The study is based on responses from more than 30,000 U.S. families, including 4,393 Hispanic respondents. Building on household surveys conducted in 2004, 2009 and 2014, it offers a pre-pandemic snapshot of how children and youth spend their afternoons and has significant implications for our post-pandemic world. It also includes a separate survey of parents conducted this fall; in it, more than three in five Latinx parents (61%) report stress about providing learning support while their child’s school is operating virtually – a significantly higher percentage than parents overall (54%)

“In this survey, Latinx parents report that afterschool programs are doing stellar work in helping meet many of their children’s academic, social/emotional and other needs. But investments in afterschool have not kept up with demand, and that puts millions of children and youth at risk. The pandemic, which is taking an especially high toll on communities of color, is exacerbating the harm,” said Afterschool Alliance Executive Director Jodi Grant. “Quality afterschool programs are essential to student success in school and life. If we want to emerge from this pandemic strong, we need to provide all our children and youth access to the enrichment opportunities and resources afterschool programs provide. We’re not doing that now, and Latinx families are among those who are struggling even more as a result.”


Other findings from America After 3PM:


  • Satisfaction with afterschool programs is strong. More than nine in ten Hispanic parents (94%) report satisfaction with their child’s afterschool program. That is the highest level of satisfaction reported in the history of America After 3PM surveys. Large majorities of Latinx parents agree that programs keep kids safe (74%), provide opportunities for children to engage with their peers and reduce unproductive screen time (85%), help children gain interest and skills related to science, technology, engineering, and math (80%), and reduce the likelihood that young people will engage in risky behaviors, such as drug use (76%). Eighty-three percent of Latinx parents say afterschool programs help young people build life skills.


  • Overwhelming percentages of Latinx parents say afterschool programs address family needs. More than four in five agree that afterschool programs provide working parents the peace of mind that comes with knowing that their child is safe and supervised (84%). More than four in five say afterschool programs help working parents keep their jobs (82%).


  • Barriers to afterschool participation are growing and inequities persist. Access to programs is a greater barrier for communities of color than other communities, and especially so for those with low incomes. Latinx parents are more likely than white parents to report there is not a safe way for their child to get to and come home from an afterschool program, that program locations and hours of operation are not convenient, and that there are no spaces available in the afterschool program they prefer. Hispanic parents reporting that programs are too expensive increased from 46% in 2014 to 57% now; and reporting that their child does not have a safe way to get to and from programs increased from 46% to 60% over the same time frame.


  • Higher-income families fare better. More than nine in ten Latinx families in the highest income bracket (94%) report that their child participated in an afterschool program, a summer program, or an activity after school, compared to just three in five Latinx families in the lowest income bracket (63%). Hispanic families in the highest income bracket report spending 7.5 times more on out-of-school time activities than families in the lowest income bracket ($3,534 vs. $470).


  • Support for afterschool programs is strong. Eighty-five percent of Hispanic parents agree that all young people deserve access to quality afterschool and summer programs. Eighty-eight percent favor public funding for afterschool opportunities.

Every parent should have access to an affordable, quality afterschool program that will keep their child safe, supervised and learning,” Grant added. This study paints a picture of unmet need, with the heaviest burdens falling on Latinx, Black and low-income families. We must do better. Publicly funded afterschool programs have long been a lifeline for children. We need to bring more federal, state, local, business and philanthropic support to meeting the needs of students and their families after school.”


A fact sheet on the America After 3PM findings from Latinx respondents is here.


Findings from America After 3PM are based on a nationally representative survey of randomly selected adults who live in the United States and are the parent or guardian of a school-age child who lives in their household. A total of 31,055 households were surveyed in English or Spanish, and a subset of households (14,391 respondents) answered follow-up questions. Data from interviews are weighted on race and income within states and by state population. Projections for Hispanic child-level data represent the 14.26 million Hispanic youth ages 5 to 19 in the United States, based on numbers from the 2018 U.S. Census Bureau Current Population Survey. Data were collected between January 27 and March 17, 2020, by Edge Research.


The October 2020 survey of parents was conducted by Edge Research and is a nationally representative online survey fielded October 12-29, 2020, of 1,202 parents of school-aged children.


America After 3PM 2020 is made possible with support from the New York Life Foundation, Overdeck Family Foundation, The Wallace Foundation, the S.D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation, Altria Group, the Walton Family Foundation, and the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation.


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The Afterschool Alliance is a nonprofit public awareness and advocacy organization working to ensure that all children and youth have access to quality afterschool programs. More information is available at www.afterschoolalliance.org.


Lisa Lederer


Phone: 2024215825