MAP would like to thank everyone who filled out our Informal STEM OST Survey! The objective of the survey is to gain an understanding of the field of afterschool programs and the extent to which they offer informal science programming, as well as the field of STEM initiatives in Massachusetts. We would like to learn about the capacities and needs of the providers, and this information will be used to improve afterschool professional development and STEM resources. Form submissions are still welcomed, as we are interested in gathering as much data possible about STEM afterschool programs in Massachusetts (http://goo.gl/forms/XFw6cn1yRT).
We have received 86 responses, and nearly every county in Massachusetts is represented except for one.
More than 60% of the programs responded that they are currently providing or partnering with out-of-school/afterschool STEM programs. Over 90% of organizations who are currently not offering any form of STEM programming are interested in offering or intend to offer STEM programs in the future. The majority of afterschool programs work with elementary and middle school students, although several programs are offered to high school students as well. 78% of afterschool programs run year-long, during the school year and summer, while 20% run only during the school year, and the remaining 2% run during the summer. The majority of organizations only offer programs during afterschool hours, although 31% of organizations offer programs before school and afterschool.
Nearly 50% of programs reach more than 100 students, and 26% of programs reach between 51-100 students. 35% of program sites have been implementing STEM programming for more than 5 years, although 54% of program sites have been operating for less than 3 years. Of the STEM programs offered, the most popular activities are hands-on learning activities such as engineering programs, Lego robotics, and geology/life sciences activities. The top three challenges programs are encountering include Funding (75%), Training and Professional development (48%), and Evaluation and Tracking Outcomes (40.8%). MAP will continue to share resources and put forth efforts to address the challenges afterschool programs are facing across Massachusetts.