Archive - 2020 Illinois 21st CCLC Virtual Fall Conference

December 8–9, 2020


The conference is designed to engage Illinois 21st CCLC grantees, their program partners, program evaluators, and other afterschool professionals in conversations about best practices and strategies that support student learning and the implementation of high-quality afterschool programs. The conference is organized in three major strands comprising topics integral to our work of developing high-quality afterschool programs:

  • Academics Afterschool
  • Continuous Improvement
  • Afterschool Enrichment

Conference Objectives

  • To draw on the knowledge and experience of Illinois 21st CCLCs
  • To share evidence-based practices and emerging promising practices that support 21st CCLCs in achieving their program goals and meeting state program requirements
  • To create opportunities for networking and to increase communication across 21st CCLC programs




Related Files

Opening Session and Keynote Presentation

Student Performance
Damaryan Benton, 2019 Illinois Youth of the Year, Illinois Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs, Elgin, IL

Welcome and Greetings
Carmen Ayala, Ph.D., State Superintendent of Education, Illinois State Board of Education, Springfield, IL
Lacy Wood, Illinois Quality Afterschool Program Manager, American Institutes for Research, Austin TX

Learning and Leading with Purpose
Bertice Berry, Ph.D., Sociologist, Savannah, GA

Using her unique blend of humor and storytelling, Dr. Berry will uplift and inspire us to lead with purpose. Her presentation will inform us how to use the tools of our past to build and create a brighter future. You will laugh, learn, and leave with a renewed sense of purpose.

Top 5 Literacy Strategies for Perseverance and Engagement (Grades 3 & Up)

Kathi Rhodus, Intervention/Transition Teacher, Carlinville Intermediate School, Carlinville, IL

It is crucial to engage students we encounter in our programs by helping them get excited about learning, but it is also important to teach our students how to persevere through the texts and tasks that may be challenging. This session will delve into five literacy strategies to help you help your students engage and persevere with all content. Digital and in-person resources will be shared.

Seeking Success: An Exploration of Remote Engagement

Michael J. Hannan, 21st CCLC Program Director, Alternative Schools Network, Chicago, IL

Join us in exploring strategies for engagement, online tools, relevant resources and more. Since May, Alternative Schools Network and NEIU’s Center for College Access and Success have collaborated to create a peer community of teachers, afterschool instructors, and mentors to share best practices for remote learning. Today we will share these lessons and practice techniques for creating supportive, engaged learning communities in out-of-school time programs.

Creativity in Leadership

Brad Lademann, Associate Director of Quality Initiatives, Missouri Afterschool Network, Columbia, MO

Whether you are the leader of an entire organization or leading an afterschool site, leadership matters. Unfortunately, leadership training in afterschool settings is not always a priority. We are often thrown into leadership positions with little or no preparation, and then we sink or swim. Join us to learn about five essential practices of leadership and how creativity fits into our leadership roles.

Learn to Serve, Serve to Learn! Implementing Service Learning in Your OST Program

Clint Darr, Resource Center Coordinator, Missouri Afterschool Network, Columbia, MO

Besides being engaging and fun, service learning projects improve character, academic outcomes, and social-emotional skills, and promote connectedness to the school and community. Out-of-school time is the perfect time to put this awesome learning experience to use! Attend this session to gain an understanding of the service learning standards and learn the user friendly PARC model. Brainstorm, share, and strategize with colleagues on adapting service learning to a virtual environment as well.

Encouraging Excitement in Mathematics

Jeanine M. Sheppard, Independent Consultant, Freeburg, IL

So many of our students feel defeated by math. Timed tests, lack of relevance, and shallow understanding quickly lead to frustration. This session will explore strategies that help revise students’ mindsets and get them excited about mathematical thinking.

52 Card Pick-Up: Family Engagement

Kim Sellers, 21st CCLC Program Director, Bureau-Henry-Stark ROE 28, Atkinson, IL
Lisa Brackett, Parent Liaison, Bureau-Henry-Stark ROE 28, Atkinson, IL
Terrie Landwehr, Program Development Specialist, Bureau-Henry-Stark ROE 28, Atkinson, IL

Engaging families can be a big challenge, even though we know there are great benefits when families are involved in their child’s learning experience. Learn how the Bureau-Henry-Stark 21st CCLC program, prompted by local evaluation results, increased the active participation of its families with fun engagement activities that help families support student learning.

Our Story
Brad Lademann, Associate Director of Quality Initiatives, Missouri Afterschool Network, Columbia, MO

Do you ever wonder about the people around you…where are they from, how did they grow up, what do they value and why? Each of us is living our own story, but our stories are connected. Join us as we explore our stories and how they are connected. We will work on developing a sense of wonder about the stories of those around us and the students we serve.

Everyone's an Asset Builder
Clint Darr, Resource Center Coordinator, Missouri Afterschool Network, Columbia, MO

Developmental Assets® are a collection of 40 research-based strengths and supports that enable young people to develop into successful, contributing adults. Everyone’s an Asset Builder is a highly motivating, interactive workshop which explores the positive paths anyone can take to increase the number of assets in the lives of children and youth. Developed by the Search Institute, this session will introduce you to this framework and show you the powerful role you and your staff can have as asset builders in the lives of youth.

Continuing Regional Forum Conversations: Expanding the Illinois 21st CCLC Community of Practice
Michael J. Hannan, 21st CCLC Community of Practice Facilitator, Cook County and Surrounding Areas
Tiffanie Hobbs, 21st CCLC Community of Practice Facilitator, Southern Region
Kim Sellers, 21st CCLC Community of Practice Facilitator, Central Region
Rachel Shields, 21st CCLC Community of Practice Facilitator, Northern Region

Illinois 21st CCLC Community of Practice facilitators will host a conversation about how best to deliver a quality afterschool program, even in the midst of a pandemic. Learn how programs are operating remotely, in-person, or in some hybrid fashion to meet the needs of Illinois students and families. The discussion will focus on integrating K–12 and afterschool programming, cultural responsiveness, and professional development including motivation strategies used to achieve desired program outcomes.

Inspiring Scientific Thinking

Jeanine M. Sheppard, Independent Consultant, Freeburg, IL

Youth have a lot of questions about the world we live in. Often we unintentionally train our students to stop asking so many questions. What if we used that curiosity to catalyze learning instead? Science is all about making sense of the natural world. This session will share strategies that use students’ questions to inspire learning and a love for science.

Top 3 Literacy Strategies to Engage Our Early Readers (Grades K–2)

Kathi Rhodus, Intervention/Transition Teacher, Carlinville Intermediate School, Carlinville, IL

Many of our Kindergarten through grade 2 students are at different places in learning to read. Tapping into our students’ curiosity can help us get their attention, but what practices not only encourage curiosity, but build literacy skills? This session will dive into three strategies that can make a big difference in your program. Digital and in-person resources will be shared.

CACFP At-Risk Afterschool Meals

Shaista Shaikh, Principal Consultant, Nutrition Department, Illinois State Board of Education, Springfield, IL

USDA’s Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) plays a vital role in improving the quality of day care and making it more affordable for many low-income families. The At-Risk Afterschool Meals component of the CACFP offers federal funding to afterschool programs that serve healthy meals and snacks to children and teenagers who participate in afterschool programs in low-income areas.

How to Build and Sustain Virtual Family and Community Connections

Renee Hawthorne, Family Engagement and Enrichment Manager, Park Forest-Chicago Heights School District 163, Park Forest, IL

This session will address how families develop awareness of and learn to manage their homeschool Social Emotional E-Learning (SEL) hotspots! This session is intended for any educator interested in building a more robust parent engagement “following” and will provide insight on how to achieve a consistent positive family and community connection. Participants will obtain strategies that can be used at home and on various social media platforms. This professional learning opportunity will help your program improve family and community connections, student readiness to learn, and academic performance.

Project Directors Meeting

Illinois State Board of Education Staff