A project of the Afterschool Alliance.

Fort Worth After School 2013-14 Evaluation Report

Year Published: 2014

An evaluation of 85 Fort Worth Independent School District afterschool programs (FWAS), including 21st CCLC programs. Key findings, which were collected via surveys, standardized test results and site visits, indicate that as participation in FWAS increased school day attendance, raised standardized test scores, and decreased disciplinary referrals. Additionally, students, parents, and teachers felt that participation in FWAS was beneficial to student overall success.

Program Name: Fort Worth After School (FWAS)

Program Description: Founded in 2000, Fort Worth After School (FWAS) provides high-quality afterschool enrichment programs to elementary, middle, and high school students aimed at promoting academic achievement, enhanced physical and social development, and reduced incidents of juvenile crime. During the 2013-14 academic school year, the program served 16,219 students daily across 85 sites.

Scope of the Evaluation: Local

Program Type: Afterschool

Location: Fort Worth, TX

Community Type: Urban

Grade level: Elementary School, Middle School, High School

Program Demographics: Fifty-nine percent of registrants were Hispanic, 31 percent were African-American, six percent were Caucasian, two percent were Asian or Pacific Islander, and one percent was multi-racial. Eighty-three percent of registrants were eligible for free or reduced-price lunch and 64 percent were classified by the Texas Education Agency (TEA) as “At-Risk,” those students who have been identified as at risk of dropping out of school. The program was split 49 percent girls and 51 percent boys.

Program Website: http://www.fwisd.org/pages/FWISD/Departments_Programs/Departments__E-I_/Fort_Worth_After_School

Evaluator: Harrist, C. J. & Witt, P. A. Texas A & M University

Evaluation Methods: Data was collected using surveys of students, parents, teachers, principals, and afterschool staff, State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) test results and site visits of programs. Evaluators used this data to measure improvements in student behavior, academic performance, and program quality.

Evaluation Type: Non-experimental

Summary of Outcomes: In general, students who attended Fort Worth Independent School District afterschool programs (FWAS) more often also attended school more regularly and passed a higher percentage of their core courses compared to students with lower levels of program attendance. Overall, the higher the level of program attendance among elementary and middle school students the greater their proficiency in the STAAR math and reading test. There were a few instances where a higher level of program attendance did not correspond to an increase in STAAR proficiency; however, the more days students participated in the afterschool program, STAAR proficiency increased.

Similarly, FWAS middle and high school students who had higher levels of participation in the program had a lower number of disciplinary referrals when compared to students who attended the program less often. The more often middle and high school students participated in the program, the lower the number of their disciplinary referrals.

Elementary, middle, and high school students reported that, due to their participation in the afterschool program, they felt better about themselves, worked better with other students, came to school more often, got better grades, behaved better at school, and better understood the importance of graduating from high school.

Parents of children in FWAS reported the program improved student homework quality, introduced them to new activities, made them more excited about school, improved their school time behavior, and helped them get better grades.

Classroom teachers indicated that, of students who were performing poorly at the beginning of the year, more than 60 percent improved in areas such as getting along with the teacher, turning homework in on time, and participating in class. Teachers also reported that more than half of students who were performing poorly at the start of the year improved attending class regularly, being attentive in class, getting along with others, and having a good attitude toward school.