Archives:

Select:

Evidence-based practices in education

READ FULL STORY

Evidence-based practices in education

Photo by Andrei Firtich

The reauthorized national education law, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) puts an increased emphasis on states and school districts using evidence-based practices in many areas. Under ESSA's Title I, schools designated by their state as “in need of improvement” must create a school improvement plan with at least one activity or program that has a related study showing it meets one of the identified tiers of evidence: strong, moderate or promising (described below).

In addition to this requirement, seven different competitive grants in ESSA will give priority to applicants who meet the top three evidence-based tiers. Although 21st Century Community Learning Centers are formula funded and do not require stringent adherence to evidence based practices, eligible entities are still expected to use best practices to improve student outcomes. Fortunately, there is a substantial and growing evidence base on the positive effects afterschool has on youth development outcomes.

This March, president Obama also signed the Evidence-Based Policy Making Commission Act of 2016. The commission established by the act has designated appointees and is beginning its work. The government’s focus on evidence seems here to stay.

Below is an overview of the evidence tiers specific to ESSA, concluding with resources to find evidence-based programs and develop new studies to add to the field of research.

Here are the four tiers of evidence-based practices in ESSA

  • STRONG. Strong studies show positive and meaningful (“statically significant”) results with randomized control trials (RCT). RCTs are viewed as the gold standard of evaluation because they are the best way to determine the effectiveness of a program or policy. RCTs take a large group of people and randomly assign them to the intervention being evaluated (the “treatment” group, in this case, is an afterschool program) or assign them to have no intervention (also known as the “control group”). However, the level of resources (time, money, expertise, etc.) necessary for RCT studies makes them incredibly difficult to implement and limits their availability. This is why it’s important that the law also includes the following tiers of evidence.
  • MODERATE. A moderate study will demonstrate a meaningful positive result on student outcomes based on a quasi-experimental study—a study that, like RCTs, has a “control” group and a “treatment” group, but unlike RCTs, it does not include the random assignment to a group.
  • PROMISING. A promising study—or correlational study—is one that shows a relationship between an activity or program and student improvements, but it does not prove that the specific activity or program under study was the cause of the change. For example, a correlational study may find that there is a relationship between gains in students’ communication skills and their participation in an afterschool program, but it would not be able to say for certain that participating in the afterschool program caused students to improve their communication skills.
  • UNDER EVALUATION. In this final, fourth tier of evidence, the law recognizes that the evidence base is itself a work in progress. The “under evaluation” designation exists for activities and programs that, while yet untested, are rationally derived from research and will be tracked to see what effects they have.

To learn more, the organization Results for America has information on its webpage and their summary on ESSA’s evidence based provisions, and Education Week also provides a recap of the new provisions. As always, let us know what questions, comments and thoughts you still have and what you are doing out in the field.

Where to find evidence-based practices

  • The Afterschool Alliance Evaluations Backgrounder: This document can be a useful tool for parents, programs, teachers and superintendents to make the case for afterschool. It includes studies that fall within the three tiers of evidence and connects afterschool programs with positive results in academics, school attendance, behavior and more. Check out the Afterschool Alliance research page for more materials as well.
  • What Works Clearinghouse:  (look for a refreshed, user-friendly site coming mid September 2016) A great place to find a few strongly supported interventions, the What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) is located within the Institute for Education Sciences (IES), a federally funded independent education research and statistics agency. WWC uses independent evaluators from contracted research firms who look at the whole body of research on programs, products, practices and policies to determine the level of evidence behind the effectiveness of the interventions. You can look up your math textbook, the program you are using to improve third grade literacy or your curriculum to affect student behavior.  However, it will be hard to find a broad base of interventions here. ESSA only requires that a single research study within any tier show positive evidence, permitting many more interventions to meet the evidence-based standard, whereas WWC bases its tier classification on all studies conducted on an intervention. The difference is explained here.
  • Journals: Education-related journals that are focused on out-of-school time, like NOIST Afterschool Matters and the Journal of Expanded Learning Opportunities, are a good place to identify new research in successful program interventions.

How to start a study or get a program evaluated

  • Regional educational laboratories: The federal government funds 10 regional laboratories to be the intermediaries between research and practice. They are designed to be a direct resource for you! You can call your REL to help answer a research question, be connected with data, help your school or program organize a study or data, receive technical assistance, and be connected with other partners in your region working on similar issues.
  • Researcher-practitioner partnerships in education: State and local school districts in partnership with research institutions can apply for federal grants to investigate a high priority problem for the education agency.
  • RCT Yes: This one is for the want-to-be researchers out there. It’s a federal government resource of downloadable software to direct organizations to conduct their own studies and track their own data. A related resource can help train you to use already existing government data sets.
  • Universities: Besides partnering to offer high quality afterschool program, universities can help afterschool providers implement and test interventions. Reach out to your local university to begin a conversation about opportunities.

Deep dive into evaluations research

Trio of newly introduced bills align with recognition of Mental Health Awareness Month

While Congress and the White House struggle with raising the debt ceiling and getting the appropriations process back on track, legislation continues to be introduced in both the House and Senate. Beginning in late April, a trio of bills have been introduced that provide critical supports for...

BY: Erik Peterson      05/11/23

Secretary Cardona makes the case for robust education spending at House Appropriations Subcommittee hearing

The FY 2024 appropriations process continues in the House this month, with agency heads testifying on the president’s budget proposal for the upcoming fiscal year. On Tuesday, April 18, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education held a budget...

BY: Erik Peterson      04/21/23

USDA proposed changes will increase access to summer meals in rural areas

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently proposed a new rule that would allow summer meal programs to provide meals to children in non-congregate settings. The proposal is a result of significant policy changes for Child Nutrition programming that were included in the...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/28/23

Comments requested on proposed changes to afterschool and summer meal nutrition standards

UPDATE 4/6/23: The deadline for comments has been extended from April 10, 2023 to May 10, 2023. Last month the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) proposed new nutrition standards for school meals provided through the National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast Program. These proposed...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/24/23

Bipartisan Youth Workforce Readiness Act reintroduced in the Senate

This month,  a bipartisan group of Senate co-sponsors reintroduced the Youth Workforce Readiness Act (S 454). The legislation, first introduced in 2019, would create a competitive grant program through the Department of Labor to support collaborations of national youth-serving out-of-school...

BY: Jillian Luchner      03/20/23

March madness = Budget & appropriations process kickoff!

This year, early March means the release of the president’s budget proposal for the upcoming fiscal year and the beginning of the FY 2024 appropriations process in Congress. Here's what we know so far about how this year’s process may roll out in the coming year.  On or...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/01/23

STEM education update: Good news and looking ahead

In the final weeks of 2022, Congress passed a $1.7 trillion spending bill to fund every agency through the end of fiscal year (FY) 2023. The bill was the product of weeks of negotiations and defense spending, supporting the CHIPS and Science Act and some policy issues attached to the bill took...

BY: Anita Krishnamurthi      02/23/23

Three new bills would support mentoring for student success

National Mentoring month in January arrived paired with three pieces of legislation to support mentoring activities: A Transition to Success Mentoring Act, Mentoring to Succeed Act, and the Students Helping Younger Students Act. All three bills currently have only Democratic support. Service...

BY: Jillian Luchner      02/10/23

Mammoth spending bill includes support for afterschool, summer, mentoring, and more

In December, the 117th Congress approved a $1.7 trillion bill that included a $40 million increase for the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) initiative and additional increases across the US Department of Education important to afterschool programs, public schools,...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/23/23

Previewing the 118th Congress: What does it mean for afterschool?

With 2022 in the rearview mirror, we can also say farewell to the 117th Congress. The new Congress marks a return to ‘divided government’ with the White House and Senate being led by Democrats and the House of Representatives under the control of the Republican Party. What might the...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/09/23

Trio of newly introduced bills align with recognition of Mental Health Awareness Month

While Congress and the White House struggle with raising the debt ceiling and getting the appropriations process back on track, legislation continues to be introduced in both the House and Senate. Beginning in late April, a trio of bills have been introduced that provide critical supports for...

BY: Erik Peterson      05/11/23

Secretary Cardona makes the case for robust education spending at House Appropriations Subcommittee hearing

The FY 2024 appropriations process continues in the House this month, with agency heads testifying on the president’s budget proposal for the upcoming fiscal year. On Tuesday, April 18, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education held a budget...

BY: Erik Peterson      04/21/23

Making the case for increasing 21st Century Community Learning Centers funding

On March 23, Alabama Expanded Learning Alliance Co-director Felicia Simpson testified at a hearing of the House Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (LHHS-E) Appropriations Subcommittee in support of increased funding for Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/27/23

March madness = Budget & appropriations process kickoff!

This year, early March means the release of the president’s budget proposal for the upcoming fiscal year and the beginning of the FY 2024 appropriations process in Congress. Here's what we know so far about how this year’s process may roll out in the coming year.  On or...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/01/23

STEM education update: Good news and looking ahead

In the final weeks of 2022, Congress passed a $1.7 trillion spending bill to fund every agency through the end of fiscal year (FY) 2023. The bill was the product of weeks of negotiations and defense spending, supporting the CHIPS and Science Act and some policy issues attached to the bill took...

BY: Anita Krishnamurthi      02/23/23

Three new bills would support mentoring for student success

National Mentoring month in January arrived paired with three pieces of legislation to support mentoring activities: A Transition to Success Mentoring Act, Mentoring to Succeed Act, and the Students Helping Younger Students Act. All three bills currently have only Democratic support. Service...

BY: Jillian Luchner      02/10/23

Mammoth spending bill includes support for afterschool, summer, mentoring, and more

In December, the 117th Congress approved a $1.7 trillion bill that included a $40 million increase for the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) initiative and additional increases across the US Department of Education important to afterschool programs, public schools,...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/23/23

Previewing the 118th Congress: What does it mean for afterschool?

With 2022 in the rearview mirror, we can also say farewell to the 117th Congress. The new Congress marks a return to ‘divided government’ with the White House and Senate being led by Democrats and the House of Representatives under the control of the Republican Party. What might the...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/09/23

Congress works to pass FY 2023 omnibus spending bill, increase afterschool and summer funding

Updated 1/3/2023: On Friday, Dec. 23 the House passed an omnibus appropriations bill by a 221-205-1 vote, following Senate passage by a 68-29 vote on Thursday, Dec. 22. The president signed the bill into law. The bill represents an increase from the $1.5 trillion appropriations...

BY: Erik Peterson      12/20/22

2022 Midterm Election Results: What could they mean for afterschool?

It has been a week since Election Day and ballots are still being counted in some of the hundreds of federal, state, and local contests. All 435 House seats were up for grabs in this year’s election, as were 35 of the Senate’s 100 seats; there were 36 gubernatorial races and seven state...

BY: Erik Peterson      11/15/22

$50M in 21st CCLC funds from Bipartisan Safer Communities Act sent to states

This summer, a group of 20 Democratic and Republican Senators, led by Senators Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and John Cornyn (R-Texas), worked to pass the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which included gun safety measures, mental health support investments, and school safety provisions that aim to...

BY: Erik Peterson      11/03/22

Learning about summer learning

Summer enrichment funding for every state was required in the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER). The State of Summer Learning Grants: An Analysis of States’ Use of ARP Summer Enrichment published in July by the organization Education...

BY: Jillian Luchner      09/19/22

ARP investments in comprehensive afterschool: Kentucky case-study

By Mahika Gupta and Alexa Kamen, the Afterschool Alliance’s inaugural Summer Policy Interns. Mahika is entering her Senior year at Colby College in Maine, working on degrees in English Creative Writing and Astrophysics and participating as a staff writer for her college paper. Alexa...

BY: Guest Blogger      08/18/22

ARP investments in comprehensive afterschool: Connecticut case-study

By Mahika Gupta and Alexa Kamen, the Afterschool Alliance’s inaugural Summer Policy Interns. Mahika is entering her Senior year at Colby College in Maine, working on degrees in English Creative Writing and Astrophysics and participating as a staff writer for her college paper. Alexa...

BY: Guest Blogger      08/05/22

Roundup of afterschool in State Budgets Part 2

With state legislative sessions wrapping up and state budgets now finalized, we bring you our second installment of the roundup of afterschool funding in state budgets. As highlighted in the previous post from June, this year brought a number of new investments in afterschool at the state level....

BY: Chris Neitzey      07/21/22

For some, a summer of enrichment thanks to ARP dollars

This summer, thanks to pandemic relief funding, some students are experiencing a summer full of exploration, connections with friends and mentors, and learning that is engaging and exciting. After the last couple years, it can be a game changer for youth who have faced isolation, loss, and...

BY: Erik Peterson      06/27/22

Jodi Grant testifies at House hearing in support of afterschool programs

This morning, Afterschool Alliance Executive Director Jodi Grant testified at a hearing of the House Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (LHHS-E) Appropriations Subcommittee in favor of increased funding for Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st...

BY: Erik Peterson      05/26/22

American Rescue Plan funds one year later: Support for afterschool, summer learning

A little more than one year ago, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) into law, providing billions in funding to support communities and youth impacted by the pandemic, and naming afterschool and summer learning programs as one strategy to invest in to support young people. So...

BY: Erik Peterson      04/15/22

Biden administration releases FY 2023 budget proposal, increases afterschool funding

Photo by Ana Lanza on Unsplash Today the Biden administration released its FY 2023 discretionary budget request, coming just weeks after Congress finished work on the much delayed FY 2022 spending bill. With regard to afterschool and summer learning support, the proposal asks for a $21 million...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/28/22

President’s State of the Union calls for increased focus on student mental health

In his first State of the Union presented earlier this month, President Biden outlined a strategy to address the national mental health crisis that has come to the forefront during the COVID-19 pandemic. Young people have been particularly impacted as losses from COVID and disruptions in routines...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/22/22

Mental health and wellness a popular topic in state legislatures in 2023

Last year, as states grappled with ways to reengage students as the recovery from the pandemic set in, student mental health came to the forefront in many state legislatures. In Georgia last year, the state legislature passed HB1013, the Mental Health Parity Act, to address mental health...

BY: Chris Neitzey      05/11/23

State legislatures looking to increase investments in afterschool

We took at look at how governors across the country are supporting afterschool in a previous post, but what kind of progress is being made in state legislatures for afterschool? It turns out, quite a bit. Below is a sampling of the different bills that have been introduced in state legislatures...

BY: Chris Neitzey      03/24/23

Governors for afterschool – 2023 edition

Last year, governors from across the country highlighted the vital role afterschool programs play in their State of the State speeches and budget proposals. Some of these efforts led to new funding streams for afterschool, as in in Alabama and Michigan; expansion of funding in states like...

BY: Chris Neitzey      03/07/23

Statewide afterschool networks continue to advance STEM as a policy priority at the state level

The Afterschool Alliance and STEM Education Coalition enter our seventh year of a project to support the development and advancement of STEM learning at the state level, in partnership with the Statewide Afterschool Networks and funded by the Overdeck Family Foundation. This year’s cohort...

BY: Chris Neitzey      02/14/23

D.C. Mayor Bowser pledges to build robust afterschool programs in inaugural address

Photo by Andra C Taylor Jr on Unsplash Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) was sworn in for her third term on January 2, 2023. In her inaugural address, Mayor Bowser pledged to “build the most robust free before- and after-school programs in the nation” in her next term....

BY: Chris Neitzey      01/06/23

State elections bring new faces to governors mansions

After a full week of counting ballots, the picture at the state level has become clear. A handful of Governor’s races resulted in Democratic gains, with Arizona, Maryland, and Massachusetts all electing Democrats. Incumbent Governors were reelected in 27 out of 28 races, with only Democrat...

BY: Chris Neitzey      11/18/22

ARP investments in comprehensive afterschool: Connecticut case-study

By Mahika Gupta and Alexa Kamen, the Afterschool Alliance’s inaugural Summer Policy Interns. Mahika is entering her Senior year at Colby College in Maine, working on degrees in English Creative Writing and Astrophysics and participating as a staff writer for her college paper. Alexa...

BY: Guest Blogger      08/05/22

Roundup of afterschool in State Budgets Part 2

With state legislative sessions wrapping up and state budgets now finalized, we bring you our second installment of the roundup of afterschool funding in state budgets. As highlighted in the previous post from June, this year brought a number of new investments in afterschool at the state level....

BY: Chris Neitzey      07/21/22

$120 million increase proposed for 21st CCLC as U.S. House Subcommittee continues FY2023 Appropriations process

Update (6/24): The House Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations subcommittee approved the FY23 spending bill detailed below along a party line vote the evening of June 23. This week, the House of Representatives continues the FY 2023 appropriations process with multiple subcommittee mark-ups. On...

BY: Erik Peterson      06/23/22

Roundup of afterschool in State Budgets

This is a first look at how afterschool and out-of-school time programs fared in state budgets in 2022. This year saw a number of governors signal support for investing in afterschool, including governors for states who have not invested in afterschool in recent years. With many states projecting...

BY: Chris Neitzey      06/07/22

Making the case for increasing 21st Century Community Learning Centers funding

On March 23, Alabama Expanded Learning Alliance Co-director Felicia Simpson testified at a hearing of the House Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (LHHS-E) Appropriations Subcommittee in support of increased funding for Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/27/23

FY 2024 budget proposal is disappointing for 21st CCLC, but includes other afterschool related increases

Today the Biden administration released its FY 2024 discretionary budget request, formally kicking of the FY2024 appropriations process, while debate around raising the debt ceiling continues. With regard to afterschool and summer learning support, the proposal requests $1,329,673 for the Nita M....

BY: Erik Peterson      03/09/23

March madness = Budget & appropriations process kickoff!

This year, early March means the release of the president’s budget proposal for the upcoming fiscal year and the beginning of the FY 2024 appropriations process in Congress. Here's what we know so far about how this year’s process may roll out in the coming year.  On or...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/01/23

Mammoth spending bill includes support for afterschool, summer, mentoring, and more

In December, the 117th Congress approved a $1.7 trillion bill that included a $40 million increase for the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) initiative and additional increases across the US Department of Education important to afterschool programs, public schools,...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/23/23

Congress works to pass FY 2023 omnibus spending bill, increase afterschool and summer funding

Updated 1/3/2023: On Friday, Dec. 23 the House passed an omnibus appropriations bill by a 221-205-1 vote, following Senate passage by a 68-29 vote on Thursday, Dec. 22. The president signed the bill into law. The bill represents an increase from the $1.5 trillion appropriations...

BY: Erik Peterson      12/20/22

Senate Bill for FY 23 Appropriations proposes $85 million increase for 21st CCLC

The Senate Appropriations Committee released a Labor, Health, and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (LHHS) bill on July 28, 2022. The Fiscal Year 2023 proposed bill would increase overall spending from last year’s LHHS appropriations by 10 percent or $21 billion dollars. The bill...

BY: Jillian Luchner      07/29/22

$120 million increase proposed for 21st CCLC as U.S. House Subcommittee continues FY2023 Appropriations process

Update (6/24): The House Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations subcommittee approved the FY23 spending bill detailed below along a party line vote the evening of June 23. This week, the House of Representatives continues the FY 2023 appropriations process with multiple subcommittee mark-ups. On...

BY: Erik Peterson      06/23/22

Update on FY 2023 appropriations: hearings and letters and more as support broadens on Capitol Hill for 21st Century Community Learning Centers

As spring starts to shift to summer, the appropriations process in Congress is picking up steam. In a familiar cycle, the FY 2023 appropriations process kicked off with the president’s budget, followed by members of the Cabinet appearing before Congress to justify the requested budget -- all...

BY: Erik Peterson      05/09/22

Afterschool programs supported through Congressional Community Project Funding

When President Biden signed the FY 2022 federal spending bill last month, it included community project funding (previously known as earmarks) for the first time in more than 10 years. Community Project Funding (CPF) allows members of Congress to request direct funding for projects that benefit the...

BY: Erik Peterson      04/05/22

Biden administration releases FY 2023 budget proposal, increases afterschool funding

Photo by Ana Lanza on Unsplash Today the Biden administration released its FY 2023 discretionary budget request, coming just weeks after Congress finished work on the much delayed FY 2022 spending bill. With regard to afterschool and summer learning support, the proposal asks for a $21 million...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/28/22

ARP investments in comprehensive afterschool: Kentucky case-study

By Mahika Gupta and Alexa Kamen, the Afterschool Alliance’s inaugural Summer Policy Interns. Mahika is entering her Senior year at Colby College in Maine, working on degrees in English Creative Writing and Astrophysics and participating as a staff writer for her college paper. Alexa...

BY: Guest Blogger      08/18/22

ARP investments in comprehensive afterschool: Connecticut case-study

By Mahika Gupta and Alexa Kamen, the Afterschool Alliance’s inaugural Summer Policy Interns. Mahika is entering her Senior year at Colby College in Maine, working on degrees in English Creative Writing and Astrophysics and participating as a staff writer for her college paper. Alexa...

BY: Guest Blogger      08/05/22

$120 million increase proposed for 21st CCLC as U.S. House Subcommittee continues FY2023 Appropriations process

Update (6/24): The House Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations subcommittee approved the FY23 spending bill detailed below along a party line vote the evening of June 23. This week, the House of Representatives continues the FY 2023 appropriations process with multiple subcommittee mark-ups. On...

BY: Erik Peterson      06/23/22

Jodi Grant testifies at House hearing in support of afterschool programs

This morning, Afterschool Alliance Executive Director Jodi Grant testified at a hearing of the House Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (LHHS-E) Appropriations Subcommittee in favor of increased funding for Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st...

BY: Erik Peterson      05/26/22

American Rescue Plan funds one year later: Support for afterschool, summer learning

A little more than one year ago, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) into law, providing billions in funding to support communities and youth impacted by the pandemic, and naming afterschool and summer learning programs as one strategy to invest in to support young people. So...

BY: Erik Peterson      04/15/22

Biden administration releases FY 2023 budget proposal, increases afterschool funding

Photo by Ana Lanza on Unsplash Today the Biden administration released its FY 2023 discretionary budget request, coming just weeks after Congress finished work on the much delayed FY 2022 spending bill. With regard to afterschool and summer learning support, the proposal asks for a $21 million...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/28/22

Secretary of Education Cardona discusses his priorities, emphasizes student engagement

In late January, U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona gave a major address at the Department of Education, laying out his vision for improving the American education system. He largely focused on continued recovery through the pandemic and the need for broader investments in education to...

BY: Erik Peterson      02/07/22

Recapping impressive OST work in summer 2021—and looking ahead to summer 2022

As the winter air blows in, it’s the perfect time to warm up with thoughts of summer. In fact, many school districts and afterschool programs know that planning for summer begins in the fall. Fortunately, the hard work programs, partners, and schools undertook during summer 2021 provided...

BY: Jillian Luchner      12/07/21

House of Representatives passes Build Back Better Act

On Friday, November 19, 2021, the House of Representatives passed the Build Back Better Act by a vote of 220-213. The legislation invests in programs that support human infrastructure and includes parts...

BY: Erik Peterson      11/22/21

ARP ESSER state plans are in! More funds are hitting the ground at the state and local level

With the 2021-2022 school year in full-swing, the federal American Rescue Plan relief funds are making important impacts in states and communities. At this point, all 50 states have submitted their Elementary and Secondary Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER) plans. The Department of Education is...

BY: Jillian Luchner      11/11/21

March madness = Budget & appropriations process kickoff!

This year, early March means the release of the president’s budget proposal for the upcoming fiscal year and the beginning of the FY 2024 appropriations process in Congress. Here's what we know so far about how this year’s process may roll out in the coming year.  On or...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/01/23

STEM education update: Good news and looking ahead

In the final weeks of 2022, Congress passed a $1.7 trillion spending bill to fund every agency through the end of fiscal year (FY) 2023. The bill was the product of weeks of negotiations and defense spending, supporting the CHIPS and Science Act and some policy issues attached to the bill took...

BY: Anita Krishnamurthi      02/23/23

Mammoth spending bill includes support for afterschool, summer, mentoring, and more

In December, the 117th Congress approved a $1.7 trillion bill that included a $40 million increase for the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) initiative and additional increases across the US Department of Education important to afterschool programs, public schools,...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/23/23

Opportunity: CCDF supplemental funds available for school-age programs

Now and over the next year, states are focusing on spending “child care CCDF supplemental funds” that must be obligated by 2023 and liquidated in 2024. State administrative agencies of the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF, also known as CCDBG) recently faced three concurrent...

BY: Jillian Luchner      10/25/22

ARP investments in comprehensive afterschool: Kentucky case-study

By Mahika Gupta and Alexa Kamen, the Afterschool Alliance’s inaugural Summer Policy Interns. Mahika is entering her Senior year at Colby College in Maine, working on degrees in English Creative Writing and Astrophysics and participating as a staff writer for her college paper. Alexa...

BY: Guest Blogger      08/18/22

Congress works to address summer and school meal challenges before end of month deadline

Update (6/24): After the Senate passed an amended version of the Keep Kids Fed Act (removing the provision that would have allowed reduced price meals to be free next school year), on June 24 the House followed the Senate and passed the bipartisan Keep Kids Fed Act sending it to the...

BY: Erik Peterson      06/23/22

$120 million increase proposed for 21st CCLC as U.S. House Subcommittee continues FY2023 Appropriations process

Update (6/24): The House Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations subcommittee approved the FY23 spending bill detailed below along a party line vote the evening of June 23. This week, the House of Representatives continues the FY 2023 appropriations process with multiple subcommittee mark-ups. On...

BY: Erik Peterson      06/23/22

American Rescue Plan funds one year later: Support for afterschool, summer learning

A little more than one year ago, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) into law, providing billions in funding to support communities and youth impacted by the pandemic, and naming afterschool and summer learning programs as one strategy to invest in to support young people. So...

BY: Erik Peterson      04/15/22

Afterschool programs supported through Congressional Community Project Funding

When President Biden signed the FY 2022 federal spending bill last month, it included community project funding (previously known as earmarks) for the first time in more than 10 years. Community Project Funding (CPF) allows members of Congress to request direct funding for projects that benefit the...

BY: Erik Peterson      04/05/22

Governors across the country signal support for afterschool in state budget requests

With a new year comes new support for afterschool programs. After an infusion of federal relief funds over the last two year to support education, including afterschool in summer programs, governors in a number of states are taking the next step to dedicate state funds towards afterschool...

BY: Chris Neitzey      02/11/22