Afterschool in Illinois

Facts & Research

  • In Illinois, 20% (433,390) of K-12 youth are responsible for taking care of themselves after school.
  • Of all Illinois children not currently enrolled in afterschool, 41% (741,400) would be likely to participate IF an afterschool program were available in their community.
  • 80% of parents in Illinois are satisfied with the afterschool program their child attends.
  • 18% (404,791) of Illinois's K-12 children participate in afterschool programs, including 52,084 kids in programs supported by the U.S. Department of Education's 21st Century Community Learning Centers initiative, the only federal program dedicated to afterschool.

For afterschool participation and funding levels in Illinois, refer to the Afterschool in Illinois Fact Sheet.

Explore America After 3PM for even more research on afterschool programs in Illinois.

State Policy and Funding

In July 2010, the Illinois Afterschool Youth Development Program Act was signed into law, making access to afterschool programs a state policy priority. This law strengthened afterschool services by creating the Illinois Youth Development Council and a three-year Afterschool Demonstration Program (subject to appropriations). The Youth Development Council will serve to establish mechanisms for creating accountability among afterschool programs by: developing standards, measurable indicators and successful outcomes of program quality; collecting and analyzing data on the effectiveness of state- and locally-supported afterschool programs; identifying gaps in service; and increasing program participation and quality by providing technical assistance, capacity building, and program evaluation and monitoring. As of fall 2011, the governor is beginning to make appointments to the Youth Development Council, but the demonstration program has not yet been funded. Other state efforts include Teen REACH, the only state-funded afterschool program in Illinois. The governor's proposed FY2012 budget called for a reduction in Teen REACH funding from $16 million to $2 million, but the final budget provided $8.6 million. While these cuts are significant, many other human service programs-such as substance abuse, family planning and mental health services-suffered even more substantial cuts. Finally, work on the School-Age and Youth Development Credential is underway to enhance professional development and afterschool quality across the state. A copy of the Afterschool Youth Development Program Act can be found here.

Check out the State Policy section of our website for state-specific data and ideas for developing and advancing afterschool policy at the state level.

See Policy News for the latest on afterschool legislation from Washington, D.C.

Interested in running an afterschool tutoring program?

Find information on the application process and selection criteria for Supplemental Educational Services (SES) providers in your state here.

Illinois received approximately $146.6 million to turn around its persistently lowest achieving schools through the ARRA-School Improvement Grants (SIG) program. SIG funds are part of the $3.5 billion that were made available to states from money set aside in the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and the FY 2010 budget. Eligible schools may use ARRA-SIG funding to support extended learning opportunities.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 offers numerous opportunities to support extended learning-time including afterschool, before school and summer programs. See more on afterschool and the Recovery here.

Your statewide afterschool network has a webpage with useful resources and policy updates:

News & Voices

What's the word on afterschool in your state? News clippings, noteworthy quotes and feel good stories highlight Illinois' afterschool cause.

What leaders are saying in Illinois:

I wouldn't be here talking to you today if it weren't for afterschool... Afterschool helped me get back on track and made me who I am today... Young people [in afterschool programs] can better themselves with tutoring and find out who they are by exploring programs that aren't offered in school. The mentors and teachers and coaches that stay afterschool, they make the difference. It was a basketball coach for me. He didn't have to. He didn't get paid for it. But he did it and it changed my life.

Bill Wennington
Former Chicago Bulls center and radio personality

"There is no greater investment than #afterschool programs," Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel at @usedgov event in DC.

Rahm Emanuel
Mayor of Chicago

There are no recent afterschool news stories for Illinois.

Want more news on afterschool? Check out this month's Afterschool Advocate and our blog Afterschool Snack.

America's Afterschool Storybook tells the stories of people and communities transformed by afterschool programs. Read more inspiring stories from America's Afterschool Storybook from people across the country.

From Chondalaya Hurt's Afterschool Story:

During my freshman year in high school, my dad was deployed to Kuwait. I reacted in all the wrong ways. I was suspended more times than I can count.

Fortunately, I was referred to Constance Carter at Project BUILD... That was a turning point in my life.

Read more from Chondalaya Hurt's Afterschool Story

From Vanessa Arnold's Afterschool Story:

This youth advocate created this pamphlet at the Afterschool for All Challenge to communicate a personal advocacy message across platforms. It was originally designed to be used as a leave-behind during meetings with Members of Congress and their staff on Capitol Hill.

Read more from Vanessa Arnold's Afterschool Story

From Rebecca Daugherty's Afterschool Story:

The foundation of Science Club is our partnership...Each partner brings complimentary expertise and resources to the table. It forms a really strong academic community, in which the kids take center stage.

Read more from Rebecca Daugherty's Afterschool Story

From Jasmine Marchan's Afterschool Story:

Support afterschool [programs]

Read more from Jasmine Marchan's Afterschool Story

From Zykia Pearson's Afterschool Story:

I am here because I am an example of how afterschool programming can change lives.

Read more from Zykia Pearson's Afterschool Story

Afterschool Champions

Illinois has champions across the state leading the fight to ensure that all children have access to safe and enriching afterschool programs.

On March 3, 2005, members of Congress established the first-ever Afterschool Caucus in both the Senate and the House of Representatives in order to build support for afterschool programs and increase resources for quality afterschool care. The following elected officials from Illinois participate in their chamber's Afterschool Caucus:

House Rep. Janice Schakowsky (D-IL)

House Rep. Bobby Rush (D-IL)

Senate Sen. Richard Durbin (D-IL)

Afterschool for All brings together individuals and organizations from across the nation who support the vision that all children and youth deserve access to quality, affordable afterschool programs. Here's a list of some prominent Afterschool for All participants in Illinois:

Action for Healthy Kids, Skokie, IL

After School Matters, Chicago, IL

Maggie Daley, First Lady of Chicago

Selected from some of the most effective afterschool programs and advocacy organizations in the nation, the Afterschool Ambassadors work every day to help keep kids safe, inspire children to learn and help working families. They know firsthand the barriers and benefits that communities face in making afterschool available to all children and are a great resource for programs throughout Illinois. Here is a list of past and present ambassadors in your state:

Ambassador Emeritus:
United Way of Metropolitan Chicago
333 South Wabash
30th Floor
Chicago, IL 60604

Ambassador Emeritus:
The Bridge Teen Center
15555 S. 71st Court
Orland Park, IL 60462

Ambassador Emeritus:
YMCA of the USA
101 N Wacker Drive
Chicago, IL 60606

Ambassador Emeritus:
Hamilton Wings
14 Crescent
Elgin, IL 60123
847-697-0876 x3

Ambassador Emeritus:
Broader Urban Involvement and Leadership Development (BUILD Inc.)
5100 W. Harrison
Chicago, IL 60644

State Contact

Kelley Talbot
Director, Youth Development
The Afterschool for Children and Teens Now Coalition
208 S. LaSalle St., Suite 1490
Chicago, IL 60604