Out-of-school time is a term used in educational circles to describe the hours, weeks, and months available for learning when young people are not in school. It describes learning that occurs in (a) everyday situations, (b) self-directed pursuits, and (c) structured, supervised learning settings. A characteristic of out-of-school time learning—common across these three categories—is that participation is not state mandated. Another is that it is not subject to educational standards and regulations because it is not a part of a certification process. A third is that access and participation are generally made possible through the activation of existing social relationships and networks. This entry briefly describes these different types of out-of-school time and then discusses some of the issues and tensions arising from these definitions ...

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