Case Study: Strengthening ties to stakeholders
"Afterschool programs help keep kids safe, improve academic performance and support families. That's why I urged the House Appropriations Committee to increase its support for the 21st Century Community Learning Centers program, which supports enrichment opportunities for students during non-school hours." - Rep. Lloyd Doggett
Keys to Success:
Speakers included the Mayor Pro Tem, a staff member to a local Member of Congress and several school superintendents.
The Fort Worth Independent School District's (ISD’s) 21st Century Community Learning Centers Programs' primary Lights On Afterschool event in 2003 was a rally in front of the JCPenney store in Fort Worth's Ridgmar Mall. Event organizer and Afterschool Ambassador Sue Matkin said the event, which drew more than 700 attendees, has helped cement relationships with key policy makers and stakeholders.
The event drew on the talents of children from 21st Century programs across the school district, featuring singing, cheers, ballet folklorico, poetry, hip-hop dance, steppers, Tae Kwon Do, a band performance, a fashion show and a Kung Fu presentation. Displays on various afterschool learning opportunities filled the mall walkways on two floors in front of the store, giving parents, the media and policy makers the chance to sample the programs' rich and diverse curriculum. In all, groups from 45 schools participated in the performances and displays.
Speakers included the Mayor Pro Tem, a staff member to a local Member of Congress, and several school superintendents. Several local afterschool leaders and supporters received plaques, including an executive from Lockheed Martin for the company's ongoing support of Fort Worth afterschool programs.
The Lights On theme was emphasized with a five-foot light bulb, a number of smaller paper maché light bulbs and hundreds of paper light bulbs for students to decorate. A large “What I Like about Afterschool” banner was also on hand for students to sign.