This week in Burlingame, California, Foundations is holding its fifteenth annual Beyond School Hours (BSH) conference. I look forward to BSH each year because I always meet so many interesting people from across the country working in school, afterschool, and in our neediest communities. As I mentioned in last year’s blog entry, Beyond School Hours is one of the only national education conferences that puts afterschool at front and center, highlighting out-of-school time programs—and the people who make them happen—as critical to kids’ success.
This year we are also excited to welcome Geoffrey Canada from the Harlem Children Zone as our keynote speaker. If you are not familiar with the HCZ, it follows the idea that changing the lives of inner city kids involves ending the cycle of intergenerational poverty through supporting the entire community.
The conference sessions this year have a focus on cutting edge technology, including digital learning and STEM. While preparing for this year’s conference, I learned that the average age kids get their first cell phone is 11! To move forward in our field, we need to learn how to capitalize on the technology like smart phones that kids are already using. I am planning to check out the STEM conference strand to get some great ideas on this topic.
I’m getting ready for an invigorating, productive conference experience. If you’re coming to Burlingame, I’ll be at the Foundations booth #31 and #32 periodically and co-presenting the sessions “More than Just Talk, Everyday Opportunities for English Learning and Learners (Thursday at 10:15 am and Saturday at 8:00 am)” and “Hands-on Reading and Writing in Afterschool (Friday at 3:45 pm).”
See you soon and stay tuned for my special report of highlights from the conference when I get back to Philly next week.
If you’re at BSH this year and have something you’d like to share, we’d love to hear from you!