While the additional learning time offered in afterschool programs and camps gives children a clear advantage over their peers academically, a recent report shows a greater societal impact that many people may not be aware of.  It is not surprising that afterschool hours and seasonal breaks from school are a peak time for kids to find themselves in trouble, whether at home or in the community.  But according to a recent report from the Department of Defense, these breaks from school could be having a longer-term affect on more children than it seems.

“More than 70 percent of 17- to 24-year olds across the U.S. cannot serve in the military, mostly because they are too poorly educated, too overweight, or have a serious criminal record. “ – Department of Defense

Research show the bad habits that lead to this state are often first developed on school breaks when youth aren’t supervised properly, or become idle.  Afterschool programs and camps can help keep kids out of trouble, keep them on tract academically, and keep them physically active on the breaks from school — preventing the development of the bad habits that have lead to this disturbing statistic.

Continue reading “Quality out-of-school programs keep youth on track for success,” by Major General (Ret.) Peter Gravett, U.S. Army at The Council for a Strong America website