On October 23-25, 2017, the National Summer Learning Association (NSLA) presented Summer Changes Everything™ in Phoenix, Arizona.

Research confirms summer as one of the most inequitable times of the year for millions of young people in America and the 2017 theme, We’ve Got the Power!, captured the critical work underway to change this by calling upon our collective will and the leadership of legions of educators, community members and corporate leaders to step up, speak out and stand in the gap for our nation’s children.

The annual national conference devoted entirely to summer learning and afterschool brought together over 400 of the nation’s top out-of-school time leaders from 41 states and provinces to share and discuss effective learning approaches, systems building, program planning, policies, and ways to advocate.

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Parents as Learning Heroes

When we nurture and cultivate a child’s natural brilliance and curiosity, there are positive ripple effects throughout every area of life—both for children and their families. Families matter and this plenary helped us all tap into the love of parents, grow the trust and support of the “village” in order to unleash the potential of every child, every day.

Powering Partnerships through Philanthropy

Some of the nation’s top foundation and corporate leaders from the Walmart Foundation, The Wallace Foundation, New York Life Foundation, Charles Stewart Mott Foundation and Clear Channel Outdoors Americas took center stage and offered insightful perspectives on education trends that influence the philanthropic investments and powerful partnerships that are helping to sustain summer learning across the country.

Youth Sparks!

Young people represent our future and their voices, ideas can power their dreams. Students of the Dysart Community Center Teen Arts and Action Program (TAAP) shared some of their thought-provoking and fun multi-media projects.

Reggie Love (Keynote)

Reggie Love served in the Executive Office of the President as personal aide to President Obama from 2007-2011, where he was responsible for assisting with the coordination and completion of the President’s daily schedule as well as long range planning. Mr. Love shared his story of progressing throughout his career.