The New York State Afterschool Network (NYSAN) Program Quality Self-Assessment (QSA) Tool User’s Guide website is designed to help you get the most out of the QSA Tool and the self-assessment process for your afterschool program. The QSA Tool is an instrument used by out-of-school time program providers to assess the quality of their programs and to assist staff and stakeholders to create an action plan for continuous program improvement. NYSAN has developed this website to serve as an online User’s Guide. This website contains information on using the QSA Tool and conducting an effective self-assessment, as well as a collection of resources which can be used to inform your program planning and improvement efforts. You’ll also find practical strategies gathered from the field to assist and support you as you develop your program improvement efforts.
The QSA Tool is a resource that builds upon the experience, knowledge, and research of afterschool practitioners and policymakers from across the country. At first glance, the tool may appear daunting, but don’t shy away. It’s called a “tool” because it is meant to help your organization grow, and is designed to be tailored according to your needs. How you use it depends on your organization’s needs, strengths, challenges, maturity, and capacity. It is not meant to be a device for judging the program as “good” or “bad,” and it is not a monitoring tool! Rather, the QSA Tool should serve as a guide for making every part of your program the best that it can be. The key value of the QSA Tool is to engage staff, youth, and other stakeholders in authentic discussions about how to continuously improve your afterschool program.
This User’s Guide website can help you initiate and support a self-assessment process whether you are brand new to the QSA Tool or simply want to invigorate your efforts. Regardless of your role within your afterschool program, this information is for you! As you review this website, take time to reflect on what strategies will work best for you and your community. Feel free to be creative and adapt the ideas so they are most effective for you. Enjoy the process and celebrate successes as you continue striving for improved program quality.
Before using the QSA Tool, we recommend clicking the links below to learn more about program self-assessment.
Once you're ready to begin the self-assessment, there are two ways in which you can access the QSA Tool:
1. Download a PDF of the QSA Tool here to fill it out on paper.
2. Fill out the QSA Tool electronically here. You will save the results to your computer; this website will not store your results.
When you’ve completed the self-assessment, these pages will help you to create an action plan for program improvement.
If you need copies of the QSA Tool in langauges other than English, please click here.
Want to learn more? The following webinar provides an overview of the NYSAN QSA Tool and how it can be used to support program quality. Click on the slide below to get started.