ASQ: A Guide to After-School Quality

Learn the ins and outs of improving OST program quality in 5 easy steps with our team-based approach.


Are you just beginning to think about improving the quality of your OST program? Our ASQ guide is an excellent place to start. This 48-page document will walk you through our unique quality improvement process and teach you how to implement the 5-step model at your OST program site. As you follow the steps, you will lead your team in developing a common vision for your program and creating a roadmap to achieve that vision together.

Free 8-page sample ASQ GuideDownload a free 8-page sample ASQ Guide


The ASQ guide was originally developed in the mid-1990s and has changed over time to meet the needs of today’s OST programs. The first iteration was used as the basis for the National Afterschool Association program improvement and accreditation system. Today, the guide has the flexibility to support anyone interested in improving the quality of their program -- for self-assessment purposes, state level quality rating system advancement, or to become accredited from the Council on Accreditation -- and works alongside any data collection tools, questionnaires, or surveys.


Cost: $75 per OST program site

When you purchase the ASQ guide, you gain access to our online portal for three years where you can download sample agendas, letters, and tips to help you on the path to program improvement. Online portal access is renewable after the initial three years.



    "NIOST has been an anchor for numerous school age care projects we do, including ASQ (After-School Quality) and Links to Learning. They are a nationally respected organization that Pennsylvania has partnered with for over 20 years."

    – Betsy O. Saatman, TA Specialist/SAC Initiatives, Pennsylvania Key

    "NIOST was a core partner in supporting the development of quality improvement systems across the nine cities that participated in The Wallace Foundation Next Generation Afterschool System-Building Initiative. The NIOST team worked well with other technical assistance partners in the initiative, always willing to pitch in and collaborate with others to make our professional learning community meetings a team effort. I truly hope the Foundation has an opportunity to partner with them in the future."

    – Priscilla M. Little, Initiative Manager, The Wallace Foundation


    "NIOST has been a leader in the out-of-school time field for as long as I can remember, and I have relied on their research, tools, and advice to improve my practice throughout my career. Their staff members are good partners and good listeners, and their influence across the country is palpable."

    – Jane Quinn, Vice President and Director of National Center for Community Schools, Children's Aid Society

    "Georgia Hall, Ellen Gannett, and the NIOST team have been instrumental in driving the healthy afterschool movement. Their dedication to quality practice, informed policy, and collective impact is instrumental in our effort to create healthier communities."

    – Daniel W. Hatcher, Director, Community Partnerships, Alliance for a Healthier Generation

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The National Institute on Out-of-School Time

A program of the Wellesley Centers for Women at Wellesley College

Wellesley Centers for Women
Wellesley College
106 Central Street
Wellesley, MA 02481-8203 USA
Directions to NIOST

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