Extending Learning Time for Disadvantaged Students - Volume 2 Profiles of Promising Practices - 1995

A r c h i v e d  I n f o r m a t i o n

Before- And After-School Program

Yuk Yau Child Development Center5
Oakland, California


Key Characteristics


Overview

The Yuk Yau Child Development Center (CDC), founded at its current site in 1982 and administered by the Oakland Unified School District (OUSD), offers three programs: before- and after-school programming for K-3 students at a nearby elementary school, a full-day preschool program, and a prekindergarten program for three hours a day.6 The center is open 10 hours a day, Monday through Friday, and provides services during the summer, on holidays, and on teacher in-service days. Most students who participate before and/or after school also participate in the summer program. Yuk Yau focuses on developmentally appropriate activities, language arts, and multicultural activities with the goal of preparing Asian children for success in school and full participation in American society.

School Context

Yuk Yau, located in downtown Oakland's Chinatown, is one of 22 child development centers operated by the school district. Yuk Yau maintains close ties to Lincoln Elementary School across the street, where all of the center's school-age children are enrolled. Although only 10 percent of the children attending Yuk Yau live in the Lincoln school area, they are automatically enrolled at Lincoln upon completion of preschool and prekindergarten so they may continue to participate in the Yuk Yau program. About 85 of the Center's 122 slots are filled by school-age children (K-3), most of whom entered Yuk Yau as preschoolers; the rest are in prekindergarten.

Ninety-eight percent of the children attending Yuk Yau are Asian; of these, 96 percent are Cantonese and 4 percent are Vietnamese. All of the Asian children come from non-English-speaking families. Sixty percent come from families whose annual income is below $15,000, and 40 percent have family incomes of between $15,000 and $30,000. Many parents work in minimum wage jobs, hold more than one job at a time, and/or support extended families that have no other source of income. Ninety percent of the children receive free or reduced-price lunch.

Major Program Features

Implementation Issues

The Yuk Yau Center overcomes two of the problems that often plague extended-time programs--transportation availability and cost--by its proximity to Lincoln Elementary School, which all of the center's students eventually attend. Yuk Yau staff escort K-3 students to the Center after the regular school day; if a child needs to stay after school for any reason, that does not cause any transportation problems for the Center.

Evidence of Success

Because the purpose of the CDCs is to assist working parents, evaluation data on Yuk Yau's academic effectiveness have not been a high priority. However, the director of the district's early childhood education program notes that several school principals whose students participate in the centers say that these students more often have their homework completed, are better able to resolve conflicts with others, and demonstrate a strong desire to learn. The principal at Lincoln Elementary agrees with this assessment.


5 Much of the information in this profile came from a 1993 research report entitled the National Study of Before and After-school Programs, conducted by RMC Research Corporation in collaboration with the School Age Child Care Project at Wellesley College, and Mathematica Policy Research, Inc., for the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Policy and Planning.

6 The preschool and prekindergarten programs are similar in philosophy and curriculum, but the preschool program's primary goal is to provide subsidized childcare for parents who are employed or training for employment. The prekindergarten program's goal is to provide one year of preschool education to children from any low-income family.
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