AYS (formerly At-Your-School Child Services) began with the vision of three concerned mothers who realized that working families often could not be with their children during the critical out-of-school hours. A growing number of latchkey kids were going home after school to empty houses until their parents returned from work. In 1980, AYS was born out of a partnership with IPS School #70 that launched Indianapolis first after-school program located within a school building. The Indianapolis Foundation supported the start-up of this new program.
Over the years, AYS has fulfilled other needs in the Central Indiana community. In order for working parents to send their children to kindergarten, AYS began operating kindergarten wrap-around programs. These programs help families overcome transportation and financial issues associated with half-day kindergarten. AYS has also opened several early childhood programs that use research-based curriculum to prepare children for school. Camp AYS keeps children safe, active and engaged during the summer months.
In 1995, AYS opened the Professional Development Center. This provided AYS staff and others who work with children and youth the opportunity to attend training and workshops designed for their profession.
AYS values accountability. In 1998, AYS began working with the National Afterschool Association and the National Association for the Education of Young Children to gain national accreditation for its programs.
Did you know?
AYS’ first program started with fewer than ten children. Today, we serve over 1,900 children through the school year and 330 through the summer. Parent surveys demonstrate that 89% of parents feel AYS enriches their child’s learning, 98% feel their child enjoys going to AYS, and 99% are more focused at work because they are not worrying about their child. To learn more, please view our 2012-2013 annual report.