A burst of interest in after-school programs over the past decade has far surpassed their growth, shutting out millions of families that need a safe place to send their children while parents are at work, concludes a new survey by the Afterschool Alliance.
The report, based on responses from 30,720 households in every state and the District of Columbia, found that more than 10 million children attend after-school programs, up from 6.5 million in 2004, when the Washington-based advocacy group did its first survey.
The survey, released this month, found that 89 percent of parents said they were satisfied with their child’s program, and 83 percent agreed that having such programs available helps working parents keep their jobs.
Yet nationwide, there are 19.4 million students—two for every child enrolled—whose parents want them in an after-school program but can’t find anything available or affordable.
A version of this article appeared in the October 29, 2014 edition of Education Week as After-School Programs