After the bell: Out of school hours activities

When you look back at your education, what prepared you best for later life? Was it your academic achievements: learning the three Rs, or getting your A levels? What if you had been a shy child, struggling in silence at the back of a big class? Would you have been able to realise your potential without extra help?

After the bell argues that the chance to take part in out of school hours activities should not be restricted to children whose parents or schools can afford to pay for them. Activities like homework clubs, sports teams and volunteering opportunities all raise the aspirations of young people and help them to build vital skills.

Did you know?

  • More than a third of all 11 to 16 year olds go home to an empty house
  • Teenagers are twice as likely as other age groups to be victims of violent crime.

The report suggests two ways in which donors can help:

  • by giving money: Many charities are in the process of scaling up or are coming to the end of their set-up funding, and need donations to continue their work
  • by providing volunteers: Companies can encourage their staff to help out during lunch breaks or after work, or fund secondments to lend charities’ expertise.

The boys I met at Eastside (Young Leader’s Academy) were articulate beyond their years and seemed unfazed by being interviewed by a journalist for NPC’s podcast.

Clare Yeowart, report author