Afterschool programs must keep complete and accurate records to show their value to the community and to obtain grants such as those from the 21st Century Community Learning Center program. Without the records, they would be unable to retain funding or attract students.
Obtaining and retaining grant funding for an afterschool program requires accurate record-keeping, both for the grant proposal and for proof of program performance. Using paper-based records requires dedicating staff hours to creating and maintaining the records and finding data errors. With so many files, it's easy to lose documentation, especially in the large space you'll need to store everything.
You aren’t operating a childcare business to push paper. Unfortunately, many childcare facilities still rely on printed documents for everything from taking attendance to invoicing. Preparing so many forms, even when using an accounting package, can still take valuable hours away from your true passion: taking care of children.
"Tax season is my favorite time of year," said nobody ever. However, 2019 is here, and it's time to start thinking about filing your annual business tax return.
Reports are essential for running a successful business and remaining compliant with state and federal regulations. You cannot consider anecdotal evidence when making business decisions and when government agencies demand documentation.
Days at any childcare facility are bracketed by the mayhem of parents rushing to drop off or pick up their children as quickly as possible. Any staff member may be called upon to mediate between two parents who need the same roster sheet. The children must be watched to ensure nobody goes missing in the melee.
Meal tracking is an essential part of childcare management, particularly if your facility participates in government reduced lunch programs or other subsidized programs. The federal government leaves it to the states to administer federal programs, which simplifies filing for you but still makes you responsible for keeping track of all meals served to your kids.
Quality improvement has been a watchword for most industries over the past 30 years. Today’s need to measure the success of and improve your after school program using data and evidenced-based improvements is an outgrowth of those programs, which have begun to mature.
How do you know if your after school program is meeting the needs of the youth and community it serves? Like the students it serves, you measure its strengths and challenges using a variety of tests designed to show you where your program is succeeding and where you need to improve.
Before you measure, however, you must clearly define your goals and set a benchmark for each, so you have something against which to measure.