October 6, 2022
Education Beyond the Classroom: Parent Demand and Policy Support for Supplemental Learning Options
By Michelle Croft | Alex Spurrier | Juliet Squire

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Out-of-school learning opportunities play a critical role in helping families assemble the educational experiences their children need — especially at a moment when so many students need extra support to recover from pandemic learning loss.

Unfortunately, these supplemental opportunities are often an afterthought for education leaders and policymakers. Too many families lack the information they need to find the opportunities that are right for their children. And access is often inequitable: low-income students are less likely to participate than high-income students, despite experiencing disproportionate amounts of learning loss.

Bellwether’s new report, Education Beyond the Classroom: Parent Demand and Policy Support for Supplemental Learning Options, explores the barriers keeping families from accessing supplemental learning opportunities, along with policy solutions that could help give more families access to every available resource to support their students, within and beyond the school day.

Findings include:

  • Polling indicates an unmet demand among parents for extracurricular options
  • Parents cite information and cost as the most common barriers to extracurricular participation
  • Sector leaders can do more to help families assemble the educational experiences their students need

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