Illinois Quality Afterschool Quarterly - Spring 2013

In This Issue

Fall 2013

Afterschool Focus: Sustainability >
Program Profile: Students Playing and Learning Afterschool Hours >
News from the Field: Thornton Fractional High School Stars Shine Bright >
Recommended Resources >
Information for Grantees >
Join Us Online >

Afterschool Focus: Laying the Groundwork for Sustainability with High-Quality Programming

One of the adages about program sustainability is that afterschool leaders should pursue new sources of funding before the current grant has ended. When you are busy addressing the daily responsibilities of managing a 21st Century Community Learning Center (CCLC) afterschool program, it’s tempting to put off planning for sustainability. The good news is that while you build a high-quality program, you are also laying the groundwork for a sustainability plan. Cultivating an engaging, mission-driven afterschool program will enable your leadership team to seek support outside of your 21st CCLC grant.
Read more about sustainability. >

Program Profile: Students Playing and Learning Afterschool Hours

In a high-quality afterschool program, the students aren’t the only ones learning. At the Students Playing and Learning Afterschool Hours (SPLASH) program, the staff and leadership team are also continuously learning. They have honed their skills in providing engaging activities and used the program’s success as a springboard for sustainability.
Learn more about SPLASH. >

News from the Field: Thornton Fractional High School Stars Shine Bright

Ask teenagers what they value most and opportunities for creative self-expression and developing job skills will likely be on the list. Last spring, students in the Thornton Fractional North and Thornton Fractional South High Schools participated in journalism and photography programs that enabled them to do both. Located in Calumet City and Lansing respectively, the programs are part of the Thornton Fractional School District 215 21st CCLC program.
Read more about the Thornton Fractional High School program. >

Recommended Resources

Lights On Afterschool

Lights On Afterschool, a nationwide event celebrating afterschool programs and their role in the lives of children, families, and communities, takes place October 17 this year. The Afterschool Alliance has resources like event planning kits, fundraising suggestions, and tips for dealing with the media posted on their website. If your 21st CCLC is hosting a Lights On event, you can register it on the Afterschool Alliance website.
Access the Lights On Afterschool resources. >

Cost Worksheet for Out-of-School Time and Community School Initiatives

This resource from The Finance Project provides a framework to help afterschool providers develop a strategic financial plan. It includes a tool to help practitioners identify program costs as well as the financial or in-kind contributions needed to cover those costs.

Financing After-School Programs

Also from The Finance Project, this publication provides a breakdown of the different costs related to starting and operating an afterschool program. It also explores different sources of funding that programs can seek.

You for Youth Resources for Project Directors

The U.S. Department of Education’s Y4Y portal has several updated resources for 21st CCLC project directors. These include information and coaching tips for project-based learning, aligning afterschool activities with the school day, STEM, strengthening partnerships, and family involvement.
View the Y4Y resources for project directors. >

Information for Grantees

Important Dates and Events

  • October 16 — Webinar for New Project Directors
  • October 30 — Professional Development Advisory Group call
  • October 31 — PPICS Milestone 4 (State Assessment, Objectives and all additional parts of the APR must be certified as complete. APR must be completed.)
  • November — Special Topic Workshop (date to be announced soon)
  • November 20 — Webinar

Grants and Other Opportunities

Walmart Foundation Local Giving Program. The Walmart Foundation’s Local Giving Program provides grants ranging from $250 to $2,500 to local organizations through Walmart stores, Sam’s Clubs, and their logistics facilities. To ensure an application has the best chance of being funded, organizations are encouraged to fit their proposal within one of the following four areas of giving: hunger relief and healthy eating, sustainability, women’s economic empowerment, or career opportunity. For more information, visit the Walmart Foundation’s website. The application deadline is December 1, 2013.

Exelon. The Exelon family of companies issues grants to organizations for initiatives related to the company’s four giving focus areas: education, the environment, arts and culture, and neighborhood development. Grants are awarded to nonprofit organizations in communities where Exelon employees and customers live and work and are available for both programs and events. Learn more at the Exelon website. Grant deadlines vary.

The Wallace Foundation. The Wallace Foundation supports its mission to improve learning and enrichment opportunities for children by supporting and sharing effective ideas and practices in five major initiatives: school leadership, afterschool, summer and expanded learning, arts education, and audience development for the arts. The organization rarely accepts unsolicited proposals but instead identifies prospective grantees and invites them to submit applications for grants; however, organizations may submit an inquiry by email to Additional information about grants and the foundation’s approach to giving is available on the Wallace Foundation website.

U.S. Soccer Foundation. Through the Safe Places to Play program, the U.S. Soccer Foundation provides grants to help organizations build or enhance soccer field space in their community. To learn more about obtaining funding for a field-building initiative, visit the U.S. Soccer Foundation’s website. The next two deadlines in the 2014 grants cycle are February 1 and June 1, 2014.

Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation’s Toolbox for Education. Lowe's donates $5 million to public schools and public school parent-teacher groups, impacting more than 1,000 different public schools per school year. Apply for the Toolbox for Education Grant and build on your already impressive parent group success with Lowe's. Increase parent involvement? Build stronger community spirit? Create a new school tradition? The ideas are endless. Visit Lowe’s Toolbox for Education to learn more. The deadline for the Fall 2013 grant cycle is October 15, 2013.

Illinois Arts Council. The Illinois Arts Council program provides grant funds and support to established not-for-profit organizations that make a significant local, regional, or statewide impact on the quality of life in Illinois. Grants recognize arts programming of high quality that is appropriate to and reflective of the communities served and that broaden opportunities for the public to participate in the arts. Successful applicants demonstrate strong operations, stable management, ongoing assessment and evaluation, and a strong commitment to making artistic programs accessible and relevant to a diverse range of participants. Organizations must also show that their programs and activities have artistic, educational, and cultural value. Learn more at the Illinois Arts Council website.

MetLife Foundation Afterschool Innovator Awards. Nominations for exemplary afterschool programs serving middle school youth opened August 14. Each of the five award winners will receive $10,000 for their program and be featured in the Afterschool Alliance’s 2013–2014 series of issue briefs and the Afterschool in Action Compendium. Information about the Afterschool Innovator Awards is available on the Afterschool Alliance website. The deadline for nominations is October 14, 2013.

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.

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Copyright ©2013 by SEDL. This publication was developed by SEDL in 2013 and was funded by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) with support by the U.S. Government. The content does not necessarily reflect the views of the ISBE or any other source. This publication is in the public domain. Authorization to reproduce and disseminate it in whole or in part is granted as long as appropriate acknowledgment is given.

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