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Community Programs to Promote Youth Development
assistance available to individual youth-serving organizations. The MOST Initiative and PUCC combined to create a pool of practitioners trained as Quality Advisers, to work with programs on improving their opportunities for youth. College-level course work is now offered for after-school providers. The United Way has also worked with youth-serving organizations to develop and put into use outcome measures to determine program quality (City of Boston, 2000b; Sachs, 1997).
All of these achievements, monetary and structural, are summarized together with thoughtful recommendations for future action in a comprehensive report of the Mayor’s Task Force on After-School Time, Schools Alone Are Not Enough: Why Out-of-School Time Is Crucial to the Success of Our Children (City of Boston, 2000b).
A number of states and localities have adopted innovative forms of financing for community programs for youth. The Finance Project, through its Out-of-School Time Technical Assistance Project, has pulled together information on these approaches and disseminated it widely (Langford, 1999):
Pinellas County, Florida, pioneered the idea of a special taxing district to support children’s services in 1946. Six Florida counties now have authority to levy such special taxes, generating about $63 million in FY 1995. While child care is the main program expenditure, 19 percent of the funds collected in Palm Beach County were allocated to out-of-school-time activities for children ages 6 to 12.
Seattle has a special Families and Education property tax levy of 23 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation, which generates about $10 million annually for early childhood development, school-based child and family services, student health services, and out-of-school-hours programs.
Proposition J, passed in 1991 by the voters of San Francisco, sets a budget floor and earmarks 2.5 percent of property tax revenue as a set-aside for children’s services. In 1995 the budget floor was $44.7 million and the set-aside Children’s Fund was $13.8 million, to be divided equally among child care, health and social services, job readiness, and a combination of delinquency prevention, education, libraries, and recreation.
Oakland, California, voters approved Measure K, creating a Kids First Fund in 1996, which generated $5.2 million in 1998, $1 million of which was directed to special youth development grants.