LIGHTS ON AFTERSCHOOL
Lights On Afterschool
Thank you to the thousands of friends of afterschool for the hard work this week in Washington and nationwide to send a clear message Congress that afterschool works!
More than 200 attendees were in Washington DC this week for the 16th annual Afterschool for All Challenge. Advocates from 45 states participated in 200 meetings with members of Congress and their staff on Capitol Hill on June 7. While the congressional visits were happening, a team of afterschool STEM advocates met with officials from the Office of Management and the Budget (OMB), the Department of Education, and the National Science Foundation (NSF). Outside of Washington, D.C. friends of afterschool made hundreds of phone calls and sent thousands of emails to congressional offices. In one day, there were 3,700 meetings, calls and emails in support of federal afterschool funding.
We are still getting feedback from the meetings and calls, but so far three members of Congress have signed up as new Afterschool Caucus members (one Republican and two Democrats) and 12 members signed on as new co-sponsors of H.R. 2353 The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (11 Republicans and one Democrat). The feedback on 21st CCLC support has also been overwhelmingly positive!
On June 6, an inspiring Afterschool Showcase celebrated the power of afterschool with youth and staff from amazing afterschool programs from around the country. Sens. Patty Murray (D-WA), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Reps. Bobby Scott (D-VA) and Nita Lowey (D-NY) made brief speeches and the American Federation of Teacher’s president Randi Weingarten made a passionate appeal for afterschool.
Some of the most memorable moments came from the amazing youth and parents who described how afterschool works to support their success and help their families thrive. A number of incredible afterschool programs from around the country attended, demonstrating their STEM activities, music production, creative arts and dance, and many other afterschool highlights. Programs included:
The event closed with Sen. Murkowski inviting all of the children at the event to join her on stage where she thanked them and all the gathered advocates for their passion
The action is not over! We invite you to participate in a tele-town hall on June 12 at 7 p.m. ET, focusing on the implications of the president’s FY18 budget for health and education. Hosted by the American Federation of Teachers in partnership with the Coalition for Community Schools and the Afterschool Alliance, national partners and local leaders will share the great results of investments in child development programs and what we stand to lose.
To participate, please RSVP through this link. You will receive a call, close to 7 p.m. ET on June 12 to connect you to the tele-town hall.
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