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School-Age Rating

Assess the quality of your before-school, after-school and summer programs for children.

According to the Afterschool Alliance, nearly one in four families has a child enrolled in an after-school program. Families trust before- and after-school programs as well as summer camps to keep their children safe, and they also recognize the role such programs can play in promoting physical activity, boosting academic skills and supporting healthy social-emotional development – the intangible skills that children need for success in the classroom and throughout their adult lives. Meanwhile, these programs provide reliable care and education for children outside of normal school hours, which is an essential support to working families.

Make sure the families and children you serve receive the highest quality learning opportunities.

Qualistar’s valid, reliable school-age ratings assess the quality of before- and after-school and summer programs – measuring multiple facets of each program, including student engagement, staff education and qualifications, as well as the programs’ support of children’s social-emotional development.  

"The School-Age Rating has amplified the standard for quality care in the Cherry Creek School District Before & After School programs. The journey encouraged and fueled our staff to provide students with even more rich, meaningful opportunities during out-of-school time." 
- Sarah K. Conley, ECS Coordinator – Extended Child Services, Cherry Creek School District 

How Does the School-Age Rating Work?

Qualistar uses a combination of observation, document review and an interview with the program administrator to assess each program. Programs can choose from several assessment options for a school-age rating.

The Qualistar School-Age Rating uses the SACERS-U tool to assess the quality of the learning environment, and also evaluates quality based on family partnerships, teacher training and education, and student-to-adult ratios. 

Qualistar offers a second school-age assessment that primarily measures quality based on adult-student interactions and programs’ support of children’s social-emotional development. This method gives programs the opportunity to do a one-time quality assessment or use a pre-assessment, which allows programs to develop and execute a quality improvement plan before their final assessment. The Qualistar team is also available to assist programs in creating and implementing their quality improvement plan.

The Business Benefit of a School-Age Rating

High marks in a school-age rating show the families you serve that you take the education and care of their children seriously. In a crowded, expensive marketplace families are looking for more learning opportunities and they should rely on data and feedback from a third party to validate the investment they are making in their children.


A School-Age Rating costs between $350-$999, depending on the size of your program. Travel costs and schedule restrictions may increase the price. Email for details.

If you are looking for financial support to help pay for your assessment  visit our Funding Options page.