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The Title IV, Part B - Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) program provides grants to schools, community-based, faith-based, and/or non-profit organizations as partners for the establishment of community learning centers to keep children safe while providing academic and enrichment activities during after-school hours.
The overarching goal of the state-administered federal program is to establish or expand community learning centers during non-school hours to provide students with academic and enrichment opportunities along with supportive services necessary to help them achieve academically and develop socially, emotionally, physically and behaviorally.
The grants are intended for schools eligible for Title I Schoolwide Program funds, where at least 40 percent of students qualify for free or reduced-price lunches.
Beware of Free Grant Writing
There are companies that operate online offering “free” grant writing services that are not free. Some require you sign a contract before receiving an award that ask you to purchase from a third party in exchange for their services if awarded.
However, you cannot use grant funds before you receive the award and any purchases must be allowable. Agreements entered into before you receive a grant award are not payable with 21st Century Community Learning funds. We recommend that you contact your attorney before entering into any agreements.
From Evaluation Guidelines in RFA: No more than 4% of each program's total budget can be used for local evaluation efforts. You may NOT use grant funds to pay for grant writing or make purchases, enter into any contract, or incur expenses before you have a signed grant agreement. – pg. 22 of Iowa RFA
Example: If you receive an award of $100,000, you may spend up to $4,000 on local evaluation.
Grant writing expenses are paid with your funds and are not reimbursable with grant funds.
FY22 Grant Application Timeline: Technical Assistance Meetings
- September 2022 - Request for Application (RFA) and informational letter available.
- Sept. 22, 2022 - In-Person Technical Assistance. 8:30 a.m. to 9:45 a.m.
- Blank Park Zoo 7401 SW 9th St, Des Moines, IA 50315 - Iowa Impact Afterschool Conference
- Oct. 7, 2022 - Grant Local Evaluation Training Webinar. 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. We will review the Evaluation Support documents (posted in the Evaluation section).
Virtual Technical Assistance Meetings
- Oct. 13, 2022 - Second Technical Assistance Meeting. 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
- Nov. 4, 2022 - Third Technical Assistance Meeting. 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
- All Technical Assistance meetings will use the following Zoom meeting
- URL: https://IDOE.zoom.us/my/afterschool21cclc
- Meeting ID: 577.413.5846
- Password: iowa
- For phone: 602778
- All Technical Assistance meetings will use the following Zoom meeting
- November 18, 2022 - Letters of Intent to Apply must be submitted via an online application and survey of students needs: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ZTPB2MB
- for Questions on the letter of Intent:
Iowa Afterschool Alliance/SPPG
- Dec. 16, 2022 - Grant applications due date. (Must be received electronically via the web portal) by 4:00 p.m. CST. NO EXCEPTIONS. You will receive notification when your application has been completed and submitted online.
- December 2022 - Application Compliance Check
- December 2022 - January 2023 - Grant reviewers read and score applications for funding.
- January 2023 - Grant reviewers conference
- March - April 2023 - Grant awards announced.
- April - June 2023 - Grant contracts finalized.
- July 1, 2023 - Program implementation may begin with summer (note: The Federal data reporting begins the school year with summer school).
For RFA questions, contact:
Vic Jaras, firstname.lastname@example.org
FY22 (Sept 2022) Request for Applications (RFA)
The items listed below are for the 21st Century Community Learning Centers RFA for Fall 2022.
Link to Online Application: https://www.iowa21cclc.com/rfa (Note: Please read the instructions before you begin. Prepare all your information to copy and paste, and upload into the application)
21st Century Community Learning Centers Instructions for the Application (Read this before you begin the RFA)
21st Century Community Learning Centers FY 2021 Request for Applications - Complete Application Packet
Iowa 21CCLC FY22 RFA Rubric - how points are awarded by Grant Reviewers
Request for Competitive Priority
U.S. Census Bureau - to document a rural location
21st CCLC Communications - Template (to be uploaded)
21st CCLC Assurances and Agreements (to be uploaded)
Previous Sustainability Form (to be uploaded by prior grantees)
Sustainability Planning Template
Collaborative Signature (to be uploaded)
Community Partner Official Notice
Application Financial Guidance
Guide to Program Budget and Accounting
Iowa 21st Century Funding Estimator (Use this spreadsheet to calculate your award)
Appendix A Practice Lists FY20
Appendix D Iowa Site Monitoring Documentation Form
Appendix E Iowa Comprehensive Site Visit for 21st CCLC
Appendix F - Partnerships for Adult Literacy
Appendix G - Sustainability Plan and MOU Template
Appendix I - 21st Century Guide to Iowa Program Budgets
Appendix J - After the Peer Review Process - Federal
Appendix J -1 - After the Peer Review Process - Iowa
Appendix J - 2 - Competitive Grant Appeal Process
Appendix J - 3 Competitive Grant Appeal Process
Appendix K - Data Collection Authority for the 21CCLC
Appendix L - Guidance for the Completion of the Minority Impact Statement
Appendix M - IAA Role of Advisory Boards in AS Programs
Appendix M - 1 IAA Advisory Board Planning Worksheet
Appendix N - Iowa 21CCLC Student Needs Assessment
Appendix O - Non Public School Consultation Guidance
Appendix P - Office of Inspector General Grant Fraud
Appendix Q Children with Disabilities and 21st Century Community Learning Centers Program
Evaluation and Professional Development Support
Local Evaluation Form (required for all local evaluations)
Monitoring of Evaluation Guidance
The required objectives are now the GPRA measures.
Grantees are encouraged to add local objectives in their evaluations. This data will be considered anecdotal since it will not be consistent with other grantees. However it is still important to your local evaluation.
A GOOD local evaluation should follow this formula:
GPRA measures + Local objectives+ Success Stories+ Pictures + other good data= A well-developed evaluation.
The new APR data system (which replaced the PPICS) does not have the same reporting functions as the previous system. In order to aggregate data and to provide a uniform reporting of local evaluation data, this form is required. Local evaluations may add additional facts and data and append the additional information to this form.
Teacher Survey Student Evaluation Questions (This is a short version of the teacher survey with only the GPRA measures that are required). You should include this in your local evaluation.
Teacher Survey (required for all local evaluations)
Professional Development Support
Iowa requires that no less than 5% be spent on professional development. This is monitored by the SEA (Items 6G and 6H) on the On Site Monitoring Form. In response to numerous visits, a template was created to assist grantees with their Professional Development plans.
The Iowa Afterschool Alliance visits all new grantees to assist them with staff development needs and will assist in developing a professional development plan. The IAA will contact new grantees and arrange a suitable date for their Best Practice visit.
21CCLC PD Activity Report (a PD plan is required for grantees)
Children with Disabilities and 21st CCLC Programming
Iowa 21 CCLC and Children with Disabilities Guidance - Explains the responsibilities for providing children with disabilities with an equal opportunity for participation in 21st Century Community Learning Centers programming and other before-school and after-school programs operated by school districts.
Iowa Department of Education Guidance
This guidance is found on the 21st CCLC website and the Special Education website.
If you are a community group and working with a district, please share this link with them:
Federal Guidance from the US Department of Education - You4Youth website
Eleven implementation guides focus on helping programs build capacity to meet the needs of all students, including students with disabilities. Experts, advocates and 21st CCLC practitioners and program leaders contributed their knowledge and experience to support your efforts to create and sustain high-quality, inclusive programs.
Topic Guide 1 - Introduction to Inclusion in 21st CCLC Programs
Topic Guide 2 - Legal Foundations of Inclusion: What you need to know
Topic Guide 3 - Establishing Inclusive Spaces, Activities, Materials and Routines
Topic Guide 4 - Training and Developing Staff to Support Inclusion
Topic Guide 5 - Identifying and Developing Partnerships
Topic Guide 6 - Engaging Families and Communities to Support Inclusion
Topic Guide 7 - Working With Schools and Districts to Support Inclusion
Topic Guide 8 - Working with IEPs, Section 504 Plans, and Transition Plans
Topic Guide 9 - Addressing Individual Needs and Engaging All Learners
Topic Guide 10 - Supporting Social-Emotional Learning
Activities of Before and Afterschool Programs
Each eligible organization that receives an award may use the funds to carry out a broad array of before- and after-school activities (or activities during other times when school is not in session) that advance student achievement.
- Remedial education activities and academic enrichment learning programs, including providing additional assistance to students to allow the students to improve their academic achievement
- Literacy activities
- Tutoring services (including those provided by senior citizen volunteers) and mentoring programs; to reduce achievement gaps for at-risk children
- Programs that provide after-school activities for limited English proficient students that emphasize language skills and academic achievement
- Mathematics and science education activities
- Arts and music and cultural education activities
- Entrepreneurial education programs, Employment preparation or training
- Physical Fitness, Nutritional Education and Recreational Activities
- Drug and violence prevention programs. Counseling, character and behavior education
- Youth leadership and character building activities
- Volunteer and community service opportunities
- College awareness and preparation
- Homework assistance centers
- Mentoring and service-learning projects
- Activities linked to law enforcement
- Supervised field trips, recreation and enrichment programs and events
Grant Program and Awards
Cohorts VII-X: Iowa has changed the grant cycle to a period of three (3) years for all new awards, starting in 2012. An additional 2 years of funding at 75% is available after a comprehensive site visit by the Iowa Department of Education.
Cohorts I-VI: Entities eligible to receive Iowa’s grant funds for a period of five (5) years has been expanded to include local educational agencies (LEAs), cities, counties, community-based organizations (CBOs), faith-based organizations (FBOs), non-profit organizations (NPOs), or a consortium of two or more such agencies, organizations or entities. Applicants are required to plan their programs through a collaborative process that includes parents, youth, and representatives of participating schools or local educational agencies, governmental agencies (e.g., cities, counties, parks and recreation departments), community organizations, and the private sector.
Grant Award - Cohort XVII 2022-2027
Grant Award - Cohort XVI 2021-2026
Grant Award - Cohort XV 2020-2025
Grant Award - Cohort XIV 2019-2023
Grant Award - Cohort XIII 2018-2022
Grant Award - Cohort XII 2017-2019
Grant Awards - Cohort XI 2016-2019
Grant Awards - Cohort X 2015-2018
Grant Awards - Cohort IX 2014-2017
Grant Awards - Cohort VIII 2013-2016
Grant Awards - Cohort VII 2012-2015
Grant Awards - Cohort VI 2010-2015
Grant Awards - Cohort V 2009-2014
Grant Awards - Cohort IV 2008-2013
Grant Awards - Cohort III 2007-2012
Every year, 21st CCLC grantees are required to submit basic information about the characteristics associated with their programs and the outcomes they were able to achieve as a result of providing services to the students and adult family members attending their programs. This data includes activities, attendance, partners/subcontractors, staffing, and regular attendees’ math and reading proficiency levels. This data is collected by the Iowa Department of Education, submitted to a federal data collection system and publicly posted on the program website.
Iowa Afterschool Report 2012 - Evaluation data from grantees, site visits, surveys, and PPICS.
Iowa Afterschool Report 2013 - Evaluation data from grantees, site visits, surveys, and PPICS.
Iowa Afterschool Report 2014 - Evaluation data from grantees, site visits, surveys, and PPICS.
Iowa Afterschool Report 2015 - Evaluation data from grantees, site visits, and the federal APR data system
Iowa Afterschool Report 2016 - Evaluation data from grantees, site visits, and the federal APR data system
Iowa Afterschool Report 2017 - Evaluation data from grantees, site visits, and the federal APR data system
Iowa Afterschool Report 2018 - Evaluation data from grantees, site visits, and the federal APR data system
Iowa Afterschool Report 2019 - Evaluation data from grantees, site visits, and the federal APR data system
Iowa Afterschool Report 2020 - Evaluation data from grantees, site visits, and the federal APR data system
Iowa Afterschool Report 2021 - Evaluation data from grantees, site visits, and the federal APR data system
SEDL National Center for Quality Afterschool
American Institutes for Research - Building Quality in Afterschool
US Dept. of Education - 21st Century Community Learning Centers
Charles Stewart Mott Foundation - Advancing Afterschool