Author: Andi Fletcher

4 Steps to Make Student-Centered Learning Come Alive!

The purpose and potential of Expanded Learning Programs have changed radically in the last 20 years. The process began with the passage of California’s first comprehensive afterschool legislation, which Carla Sanger of LA’s BEST and I initiated in 1997. This paved the way for hundreds of millions of dollars in funding for elementary and middle school programs and resulted in a growing body of know...

If You Don’t Think Diversified Funding is the Only Way to Sustain Your Program, Think Again…

It’s 2017 and here’s what we’re up against: A billionaire Secretary of Education is committed to dismantling public education as we know it. The White House is targeting immigrants, many of whom are Latino and Asian families living in the communities we serve. A Congressional majority is determined to repeal the Affordable Care Act and reduce Medicaid, both of which provide the o...

What Expanded Learning Increasingly Looks Like – and Why It’s So Important!

Looking back over the two decades… that I’ve had the privilege of being part of the grand experiment of developing expanded learning opportunities for millions of America’s most vulnerable children, I believe we’re in the process of co-creating a future that can and will make a bigger difference than any of us could have imagined. The rate of change is accelerating. The bre...

STEM Anyone? Everyone?

STEM isn’t one of my areas of expertise. As a consultant, I’ve spent time with hundreds of programs. I’m clear that there really are fifth graders who know much more than I do about robotics, coding and engineering design and are better at algebra than I ever will be. I love my time with high school students who are excited about 3-D printers – especially when they make cases for...

Do Good, Have Fun and Make a Difference!

In a month or so I’ll have the privilege of entering the seventh decade of my life. For someone who has always worked hard, played hard, done good (I hope) and had fun (I know), that’s quite an accomplishment – and it came with lot of great support from friends, family and colleagues and luck! I’ve been blessed with being a mother and grandparent, a university professor, a CEO of...

A Modest Proposal

As Common Core gets underway, we have a great opportunity to take our programs to the next level. We can ensure that students aren’t just consumers of knowledge, but creators, critics and communicators of ideas! We have a chance to become more student-centered, to be guides-by-the side and facilitators of learning rather than adults who are in charge of what kids learn or what they experienc...

Common Core and the Competition

There’s a lot to be said about the current version of education reform and Common Core. I’m all in favor of getting rid of No Child Left Untested. I believe that all children should become fluent readers and writers and well-versed in math because these are skills that will help them succeed in school and, more importantly, in life. I’m convinced that what will separate kids who ...

Leading With Purpose, Passion and Intention!

A few years ago I wrote a book called Lessons in Leadership, drawing on the wisdom of pioneers in the afterschool world – individuals who have made a real difference in developing and sustaining exemplary programs, forging authentic partnerships, building the capacity of thousands of staff members to be more successful than they had ever imagined, influencing public policy and impacting the lives ...

If Not Now, Then When? If Not You, Then Who?

It’s six o’clock in the morning and I’m sitting in my office, drinking coffee, eating yogurt and blueberries and putting a schedule together for the next three hours before I have a meeting with the Governor’s Chief of Staff. With careful planning and any luck, I can give 20 folks the information they need to register to vote. I can encourage 15 people to make choices that ...

You Are Changing Lives!

Every day I’m reminded of how fortunate I am to work with such amazing people who are doing such incredible work! Whether I’m consulting with program directors, meeting with leadership members, talking with colleagues or visiting sites, my passion is continually re-ignited, my sense of purpose is re-confirmed and my commitment to doing my best to make a difference in the world is stren...

It’s Time to Think and Act Differently

Over the past several months I’ve met with leaders at the White House, the Senate and Congress and with high level federal department officials and executives of national organizations. I’ve spoken with California’s top policymakers, sat next to the Governor on a flight to Los Angeles and presented at several conferences across the country. With few exceptions, I’ve been su...

It’s Time To Go Beyond Changing Lives To Saving Lives!

For the past fifteen years I’ve had the privilege of working in the afterschool field as a program director, consultant, policymaker and advocate. I’ve met countless people who are making a huge difference. Students are doing better in school, becoming more enthusiastic about learning, developing positive social relationships, experiencing new things and mastering new skills. ThereR...