Budget Chart – FY13 Impact By State | Download 21st CCLC Fact Sheet | Latest Policy News
The 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) initiative is the only federal funding source dedicated exclusively to afterschool programs. The No Child Left Behind Act reauthorized 21st CCLC in 2002, transferring the administration of the grants from the U.S. Department of Education to the State Education Agencies. Each state receives funds based on its share of Title I funding for low-income students. Grants support afterschool programs that provide the following services to students attending high-poverty, low-performing schools:
- Academic enrichment activities that can help students meet state and local achievement standards.
- A broad array of additional services designed to reinforce and complement the regular academic program, such as: drug and violence prevention programs, counseling programs, art, music, and recreation programs, technology education programs, and character education programs.
- Literacy and related educational development services to the families of children who are served in the program.
(U.S. Department of Education, 2003)
Conversations about the next reauthorization of 21st CCLC are underway. The Afterschool Alliance has developed a set of recommendations to help ensure continued effectiveness of the program and provide adequate support systems for local afterschool programs. (See Elementary and Secondary Education Act)
Since administration of the grants was transferred to the states, most states have made four or more rounds of new grants. As of May 2011, there are now 4,165 grants funding afterschool programs for more than 1.6 million children and youth in 10,466 school-based and community-based centers across the country. Other characteristics:
- The average grant size for 2010 grantees was $323,369.
- On average, there are three centers/sites per grant with an annual budget of $109,924. The average annual cost per student ranges from $604 to $1249.
Funding History, 21st CCLC
Amount Authorized in No Child Left Behind Act
|2008 ||$1.08 billion ||$2.5 billion |
|2009 ||$1.13 billion ||$2.5 billion |
|2010 ||$1.16 billion ||$2.5 billion |
|2011 ||$1.154 billion ||$2.5 billion |
|2012 ||$1.152 billion ||$2.5 billion |
- About three in five grantees are school districts and about one in five grantees are community-based organizations, yet roughly nine in ten centers are located in schools.
- Ninety-four percent of centers are open four or more days per week and 76 percent of centers are open at least 11 hours per week for 29 weeks per year. Centers are open for an average of 14.6 hours per week.
- Academic assistance, enrichment activities and recreational activities are the most common services offered by programs.
- Slightly less than half of centers serve elementary school students exclusively and approximately two thirds of all centers serve elementary students in some capacity. About 39 percent of centers serve middle school students, but only 19 percent of these centers exclusively target this population. Finally, 18 percent of centers serve high school students. About 12 percent of centers exclusively target high school students.
- Nearly two-thirds of all attendees qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. In addition, over 16 percent of regular participants have limited English proficiency (LEP), a figure which is greater than the overall percentage of LEP students in the U.S. (11 percent).
- Centers are serving an increasingly diverse group of children. More than 1 in 3 attendees come from a Hispanic/Latino background, while 25 percent of all attendees are African-American.
- The average number of regular attendees per center is 88, while the average number of total attendees per center is 182.
- As centers mature over time they tend to move away from an emphasis on recreation and move toward a greater focus on academic enrichment. Trends indicate that more mature programs, particularly those that primarily focus on academic enrichment, have a higher rate of average regular attendance than centers that are relatively new. More mature academic enrichment programs have an average regular attendance rate of 71 percent while newer programs average a rate of 48 percent*.
- Data courtesy of the U.S. Department of Education and Learning Point Associates 2010 and 2007)
Evaluations and teacher reports have revealed positive results in behavior and achievement for students who regularly attend 21st Century Community Learning Centers.
- Annual performance report data from 21st CCLC grantees across the country demonstrate that regular attendees improve their reading (43%) and math grades (49%). (Learning Point Associates, 2007)
- Teachers reported that over three quarters of regular 21st CCLC program participants showed improvement in homework completion and class participation, while 72 percent of regular participants showed improvements in student behavior. (Learning Point Associates, 2009)
- 21st CCLC funding has been a major factor in helping to close the socioeconomic gap in afterschool participation. While afterschool participation rates have increased at every level of family income nationwide, lowest income youth have shown the greatest increase in participation. (Harvard Family Research Project, 2006)
- Students who attend 21st CCLC programs more regularly are more likely to improve their grades, test scores and overall academic behavior. More mature 21st CCLC programs have greater rates of regular attendance and therefore are more effective in improving students’ academic behavior. (Learning Point Associates, 2007)
- The Promising Afterschool Programs Study, a study of about 3,000 low-income, ethnically-diverse elementary and middle school students, found that those who regularly attended high-quality programs (including programs funding by 21st CCLC) over two year demonstrated gains of up to 20 percentiles and 12 percentiles in standardized math test scores respectively, compared to their peers who were routinely unsupervised during the afterschool hours. (Policy Studies Associates, Inc., 2007)
- Elementary school students attending LA’s BEST afterschool program—a program funded in part by 21st CCLC—improved their regular school day attendance and reported higher aspirations regarding finishing school and going to college. Additionally, LA’s BEST participants are 20 percent less likely to drop out of school and 30 percent less likely to participate in criminal activities compared to matched nonparticipants. (UCLA National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards and Student Testing, June 2000, December 2005 and September 2007)
- Fifty-nine percent of former Citizen Schools 8th Grade Academy participants enrolled in high quality high schools compared to 28 percent of matched nonparticipants. Former participants of Citizen Schools—a program funded in part by 21st CCLC were also significantly more likely to graduate from high school in four years than were Boston Public Schools students overall. (Policy Studies Associates, Inc., July 2009)
- Wisconsin teacher-reported improvements in behavior reflect that more than half of all regular 21st CCLC attendees improved in behaving well in class (53 percent), class participation (66 percent), being attentive in class (57 percent) and homework completion (66 percent). (Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, 2010)
The 21st CCLC initiative has spurred state and local investments in afterschool and helped leverage additional funding to build sustainable afterschool infrastructures.
- The typical 21st CCLC grantee has 6 partners who contribute to the project by providing services and resources not directly funded by 21st CCLC. These partners include community-based organizations; faith-based organizations, nationally affiliated non-profits, such as YMCAs and Boys and Girls Clubs; libraries; museums; health clinics; and universities. Contributions from partners include volunteer staff, supplies and materials or services such as evaluation or fundraising assistance. (U.S. Department of Education and Learning Point Associates, 2005)
- 21st CCLC grant money allows programs to leverage and link together funding streams that can lead to sustainable programs. On average, 21st CCLC grantees have two other funding sources. These sources include the local school districts, state funding, other federal funding, philanthropic and private funding. (U.S. Department of Education and Learning Point Associates, 2005)
- 39 states have started Statewide Afterschool Networks to develop state-level supports and policies to ensure quality and sustainable afterschool programs in their states.
- Highlights of recent state initiatives include:
- In California, the state reached the budget “trigger” for Proposition 49 funding in 2006, releasing $428 million in new funding for afterschool programs for elementary and middle school students. This brings California’s total afterschool budget to $550 million, not including the state’s allotment for federal 21st CCLC dollars.
- In Colorado, the state legislature passed HB 1248, allocating $300,000 in new funding for afterschool programs.
- Georgia made a total of $14 million available to its Division of Family and Children Services in the Department of Human Resources for grants to school and community-based afterschool programs. The funding includes an allocation of $10 million from its federal TANF funds and $4 million in state revenues.
- The Iowa general assembly approved two new sources of funds for afterschool programs totaling $3.5 million.
- The Massachusetts legislature and Governor approved a $1 million increase to the After School and Out of School Time grant program, doubling the amount appropriated during the previous year’s legislative session for a total of $2 million.
- In Missouri, the legislature approved funding for two new afterschool initiatives: METS (Math, Engineering, Technology and Science), an initiative to support informal math and science learning, and Healthy Lifestyles, which provides programming to address poor nutrition and childhood obesity. The legislature funded each initiative at $500,000 for a total of $1 million.
- The Minnesota legislature approved $5.3 million in new funds for afterschool programs over two years. This is the first new money allocated to afterschool in the state in at least five years.
- In New Mexico, the state is investing $2 million in a new afterschool enrichment program, along with approximately $2 million in additional funding for afterschool, weekend and summer programs targeted to specific local communities or for specific purposes, such as obesity prevention.
- The Washington legislature approved $3 million for grants to afterschool programs—this is the first time Washington has dedicated state funds to afterschool.
- Beyond spurring additional investments, a cost-benefit analysis conducted by the Rose Institute at Claremont McKenna College found that every dollar invested in afterschool actually saves between three and thirteen dollars in costs ranging from grade retention to future incarceration. Based on the Rose Institute’s estimate, the current investment in 21st CCLC saves more than $3 billion in taxpayer dollars. (The Costs and Benefits of Afterschool Programs, Rose Institute, September 2002)
Despite strong and sustained public support -- two out of three Americans see afterschool programs as an absolute necessity -- funding for 21st Century Community Learning Centers has remained stagnant, leaving a great demand unfulfilled.
- Funding for 21st CCLC is currently $1.54 billion, which is still less than half of the $2.5 billion authorized by the No Child Left Behind Act.
- Current funding levels do not come close to meeting the nationwide demand:
- There are 18.5 million children in the United States whose parents would send them to an afterschool program if one were available. (America After 3PM, Afterschool Alliance, October 2009)
- Nearly one-half of afterschool program leaders (47.4 percent) report their budget is inadequate to meet the needs of students and families. (Uncertain Times: Recession Imperiling Afterschool Programs and the Children They Serve, Afterschool Alliance, April 2009)
- In 2006, 1,247 organizations applied for 21st CCLC afterschool grants. Just 325 of them received funding- a fundign rate of only 26%. (Learning Point Associates, 2007)
- The federal government contributes only 11 percent of the cost of afterschool, while 29 percent of children in afterschool meet the federal government’s definition of low-income and in need of federal assistance. (Roadmap to Afterschool for All: Examining Current Investments and Mapping Future Needs, Afterschool Alliance, May 2009)
- About 6 in 10 programs report a loss in funding due to the recession, with 1 in 10 reporting a significant loss that will cause cutbacks to the program or cause one or more sites to close. (Uncertain Times: Recession Imperiling Afterschool Programs and the Children They Serve, Afterschool Alliance, April 2009)
- The vast majority of FY2011 dollars will support existing grantees. While most states will be able to make a limited number of new awards, others will struggle to support existing grantees since funding in some states decreased due to changes in the Title I formula.
In these difficult economic times, American families need quality afterschool programs more than ever. In communities today, 15.1 million children take care of themselves after the school day ends. The hours between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. are the peak hours for juvenile crime and experimentation with drugs, alcohol, cigarettes and sex. The afterschool hours can be a time for trouble or a time for kids to learn new skills, develop relationships with caring adults and prepare for the future. In a country where only one third of young people graduate high school prepared for college, work and citizenship, we can’t afford to waste the after school hours.
Federal funding sources such as 21st CCLC are essential to help states and local communities establish support systems that make afterschool programs and the extra learning time they provide an expectation, not an afterthought. The 15.1 million children who are unsupervised after school deserve better.