Tony Streit is a nationally recognized expert in media education, youth development, out-of-school time, and informal STEM learning. He is dedicated to helping educators harness 21st-century tools to provide hands-on, student-centered learning that engages, motivates, and inspires young people.
Streit is Principal Investigator for EDC’s National Center on Afterschool and Summer Enrichment (NCASE). Funded by the Administration for Children and Families, Office of Child Care, EDC and its partners—the National Institute on Out-of-School Time (NIOST), the National Summer Learning Association, and WRMA, Inc.—are providing materials and training to ensure that all school-age children can access high-quality afterschool and summer learning experiences that promote their development and academic achievement.
Streit specializes in providing direct consultation and assistance to the philanthropic community, tailoring services to meet the needs of both corporate and private funders. He leads program management of the Adobe Youth Voices initiative, a global professional development effort for both in-school and afterschool educators in youth media making, and technical assistance for The Robert R. McCormick Foundation’s Why News Matters, a three-year pilot initiative to advance news literacy across Chicago. (Read a blog post by Streit about youth media making.)
Since 2002, Streit has directed The YouthLearn Initiative, a broad array of research, promising practices, and curricular strategies on community-based, contextual learning intended to build critical thinking, creativity, content knowledge, and other skills that are essential to college and career success. Streit and his team provide professional development, program materials, research and evaluation, and technical assistance to organizations and educators in both formal and nonformal settings.
Streit has been a consultant and trainer on project-based learning (PBL) in afterschool for the Massachusetts Department of Education’s 21st Century Community Learning Centers program for over 10 years. Through workshops coordinated by NIOST, Streit facilitates train-the-trainer style experiences emphasizing the value of creativity and critical thinking skills, inquiry as an instructional approach, and intentional connections to school-day learning. Through this work, a PBL approach has now become a required element of all afterschool programs in Massachusetts.
Similar past projects include co-development of The Afterschool Academies, a comprehensive training approach for afterschool educators developed for the Mott Foundation, management of the National Science Foundation (NSF) ITEST Learning Resource Center (now STELAR, for which Streit is a senior advisor); and consultation with the Verizon Foundation on best strategies to engage afterschool educators in their use of the Thinkfinity educator portal. He has also collaborated with Noyce Foundation, University of Nebraska Lincoln, Bechtel Foundation, SEDL, MIT Media Lab, Open Society Institute, Time Warner, Kellogg Foundation, USAID, National Institute for Out of School Time, and numerous schools, youth centers, state agencies and school districts across the US and overseas.
Streit is the co-creator of Adobe Youth Voices Program Guide and the co-author of ITEST Convening Report: Defining an Afterschool Research Agenda and the chapter “Working in Afterschool” published in the report Preparing Tomorrow’s STEM Workforce Through Innovative Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers.
Currently, Streit is a Board Member and the Treasurer of the National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE). Previously, he served on the Technical Working Group on STEM for the US Department of Education’s 21st Century Community Learning Center Program. He has also served as an advisor to the Next Generation Youth Work Coalition, the National Partnership for Quality Afterschool Learning, the Informal Learning in Science and Afterschool Project, and the Ready to Learn Partnership.
Before joining EDC, he was Co-Founder and Co-Director of Street-Level Youth Media, a Chicago organization that he helped build into a nationally recognized youth development model.
Streit received a BA in communications and economics from University of Notre Dame, and studied documentary filmmaking at Columbia College Chicago.