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May 15, 2013

Nine States Receive $5,000 Grants to Convene Student Success Summits

DENVER—Statewide afterschool networks in Illinois, Maryland, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, South Carolina, Virginia and Wyoming each received $5,000 in competitive grants from the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL). The grants will allow the networks to host Statewide Stakeholder Summits on student success. The summits will provide a forum for education experts, state legislators and legislative staff to discuss policy options and share best practices, research and data about high-quality programs that expand learning opportunities in their states. In addition to the funding, grant recipients will receive in-depth consulting and technical assistance from both the Afterschool Alliance and NCSL.

The grants will help the networks bring together state legislators, legislative staff, state department of education representatives, governors’ education advisers, local community and education leaders, and afterschool network partners to highlight the current and future role of afterschool and expanded learning in their states.

Each state will hold a summit under the theme, “Leveraging the Power of Afterschool and Summer Learning for Student Success.” The summits will focus on:

  • College and career readiness.
  • Science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).
  • The role of afterschool and expanded learning in the transition to the Common Core State Standards in those states that choose to implement them.
  • Innovations in out-of-school time programming.
  • Out-of-school time as workforce development.
  • Structuring and supporting state policy for afterschool and expanded learning.
  • How expanded learning can help minimize the opportunity gap.
  • The effect of afterschool on academic achievement, including student attendance, behavior and coursework.
  • Creating and ensuring quality standards in afterschool programs.

The grants, which run from April 2013 through October 2014, are made possible with support from the C.S. Mott Foundation.

Statewide afterschool networks are currently being funded by the C.S. Mott Foundation in 41 states to help develop, support and sustain high-quality afterschool and expanded learning opportunities for children and youth. These networks work alongside state stakeholders including policymakers and leaders in education, juvenile justice, childcare, youth development, health and workforce development.

All states with C.S. Mott-funded statewide afterschool networks that have not yet held a summit were invited to apply to participate in the current initiative. A selection committee of state policy and afterschool experts reviewed applications and made award recommendations.

NCSL is a bipartisan organization that serves the legislators and staffs of the states, commonwealths and territories. It provides research, technical assistance and opportunities for policymakers to exchange ideas on the most pressing state issues and is an effective and respected advocate for the interests of the states in the American federal system.