Los Angeles above average when it comes to kids in after school programs

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A decade-old group that’s organizing after-school activities nationwide this afternoon says Los Angeles deserves praise for doing a good job at enrolling students in afterschool programs.

The after school hours between 3 o'clock and 6 o'clock in the evening are the peak times for juvenile crime and other kid trouble. The non-profit Afterschool Alliance says more than a quarter of Los Angeles school-age children are in after school programs.

That’s significantly higher than the national average. But the group’s study says that still leaves about 130,000 young people unsupervised after the school bell rings and before mom or dad get home from work.

The Afterschool Alliance says teens that aren’t involved in after school activities like L.A. Unified’s “Beyond the Bell” program are three times more likely to skip class than those that are.

The Alliance is helping to organize more than 7,000 events for its “Lights On Afterschool” event. The gatherings in schools, malls and parks are intended to cut the number of latchkey kids by urging lawmakers to protect after school programs.

You can find “Lights on Afterschool” events in your area at