In This Issue
Photo from Park Forest-Chicago Heights SD 163 "X-STEAM" Program.
Afterschool Focus: STEM >
Program Profile: Park Forest-Chicago Heights SD 163 "X-STEAM" Program >
News from the Field: Rockford Public Schools 21st CCLC Makes the Most of Evaluation >
Recommended Resources >
Information for Grantees >
Join Us Online >
Afterschool Focus: STEM
It is no secret that STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) is a popular but daunting topic for afterschool practitioners. Job forecasts show that there are professional opportunities in these fields, but many students—especially young women and minorities—do not have exposure to STEM opportunities or do not express interest in these areas. Many afterschool programs have turned their focus to boosting student achievement through STEM, and these efforts have yielded results.
Read more about STEM in afterschool. >
Program Profile: Park Forest-Chicago Heights SD 163 "X-STEAM" Program
Park Forest-Chicago Heights School District 163 “X-STEAM” 21st CCLC Program engages students with science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) activities. The program aims to prepare students for the rigor of high school preparatory coursework that will support their readiness for college or an innovative career in these areas.
Learn more about Park Forest-Chicago Heights SD 163 X-STEAM afterschool program. >
News from the Field: Rockford Public Schools 21st CCLC Makes the Most of Evaluation
The team with After School Achievement Program at Rockford Public Schools 21st CCLC shares the program’s evaluation findings with advisory board members, funders, community partners, parents, and of course the individual 21st CCLC sites. Although involving so many stakeholders in conversations about evaluation can seem intimidating at first, the program has used this practice to foster continuous improvement and support sustainability efforts.
Learn more about Rockford Public Schools afterschool program. >
Kids on the Move
The Afterschool Alliance recently released the 2015 America After 3PM special report, "Kids on the Move: Afterschool Programs Promoting Healthy Eating and Physical Activity," focusing on the role afterschool programs play in supporting the health and wellness of their students. The report finds that (1) parents want afterschool programs to provide healthy foods to children and keep their children physically active; (2) parents are overwhelmingly satisfied with the healthy foods that their child is served and the physical activity offered at their child's program; and (3) providing healthy food and offering opportunities for physical activity in an afterschool program is especially important to low-income families. To learn more, read the full report. The Afterschool Alliance also created an infographic on how afterschool programs can help students adopt healthier lifestyles.
Download the report. >
Afterschool Quality Briefs
The National AfterSchool Association has published five focus briefs on afterschool quality. Titles include: Why Afterschool Quality Matters, Identifying and Improving Quality Programs, Promoting Professionalism, Funding Quality Initiatives, and Afterschool Quality Matters: A Call to Action. There is also a media toolkit to help afterschool practitioners discuss the importance and impact of high-quality afterschool programming with stakeholders.
Download the briefs. >
Information for Grantees
Important Dates and Events
- April 15—Afterschool 101, Part 2: Programming
- May 8—Afterschool 101, Part 3: Relationships and Communication
- May 12—Spring Conference Networking Session, Normal, IL
- May 13—Spring Conference, Normal, IL
- May 20—Spring 2015 Resource Bulletin Release
- May 20—Webinar
Grants and Other Opportunities
Lockheed Martin STEM for Education Initiative. One of Lockheed Martin's philanthropic focus areas is the delivery of standards-based science, technology, engineering and math education to students in K–16. The company supports a wide range of STEM activities, and evaluates applications quarterly. Eligible applicants include 501(c)(3) organizations and international equivalents, public elementary/secondary schools, and United States–based institutes of higher education. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. Learn more on the Lockheed Martin philanthropy website.
Join Us Online
Do you have a question for your afterschool colleagues? Would you like to know what’s going on in other Illinois 21st CCLC programs? Join the Illinois Quality Afterschool Facebook Group.
Would you like to receive the Illinois Quality Afterschool newsletter and resource brief? Fill out our online subscription form.