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Our Research

Dr. Shirley Brice Heath studied over 124 afterschool programs for 10 years and found successful programs included*:

  • Community-based – CMC is adapted to SPPN’s distinct needs and takes advantage of existing community resources, becoming a part of St. Paul’s collective impact initiatives.

  • Provides risk-taking opportunities: Performances are a positive risk-taking opportunity. Doing them in a group se

  • Time-intensive: CMC youth rehearse 5 hours a week, with an option for piano lessons and a youth leadership team. 

  • Connection to social resources: By partnering with the Boys & Girls Club and St. Paul Public and charter schools, CMC is able to make connections to social resources, provide daily meals, and link students/families to needed resources.

  • Use of mentors: CMC uses veteran students to teach newer students. Our performance-intensive choir mentors our training choir program regularly.

  • Ensemble-focused: By keeping the focus on excellence and success of ensemble, teamwork, communication skills, relationship skills are required, rather than competition of individuals. 

*Information taken from Heath, Shirley Brice and Elisabeth Soep. Youth Development and the Arts in Nonschool Hours (PDF attached)

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