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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.
FY24 Grant Application Timeline & Application Update
Note: The grant application due date has been extended to Jan. 19, 2024.
- September 2023 - Request for Application (RFA) and informational letter available.
- Sept. 28, 2023 - In-Person Technical Assistance. 12:50 to 2:20 p.m.; Holiday Inn, Bennigan Room, 4800 Merle Hay Rd, Urbandale, IA 50322
- Oct. 4, 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).
- Oct. 13, 2023 - First Virtual Technical Assistance Meeting. 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
- Nov. 8, 2023 - Second Virtual 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
- Letter of Intent - This year, a letter of intent will not be required.
- Jan. 19, 2024 - New Grant Application Due Date
- Upload the application, 21st Century Community Learning Centers Instructions for the Application - Complete Application Packet and budget forms D1 and D2.
- Include the following attachments:
- 21st CCLC Communications Template (to be uploaded when you apply)
- 21st CCLC Assurances and Agreements (to be uploaded when you apply)
- Previous Sustainability Form (to be uploaded by prior grantees)
- Collaborative Signature (to be uploaded when you apply)
- Include 5 MOU’s to document your community partners
- Email your application and all attachments to Vic Jaras at firstname.lastname@example.org and CC Tim Glenn at email@example.com between Jan. 16 and Jan. 19 at 4 p.m.
- January 2024 - Application Compliance Check
- December 2023 - January 2024 - Grant reviewers read and score applications for funding.
- February 2024 - Grant reviewers conference
- April 2024 - Grant awards announced.
- April - June 2024 - Grant contracts finalized.
- July 1, 2024 - Program implementation may begin with summer (Note: The Federal data reporting begins the school year with summer school).
For RFA questions, contact Vic Jaras at firstname.lastname@example.org or 515-402-2729.
FY24 Request for Applications
The items listed below are for the 21st Century Community Learning Centers FY24 (Fall 2023).
Online Application - (Note: Read instructions before you begin. Prepare all the information to copy, 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 RFA - Complete Application Packet
Iowa 21CCLC RFA Rubric - how points are awarded by Grant Reviewers
U.S. Census Bureau - to document a rural location
Unique Entity Identifier (replaced the DUNs number in 2022)
21st CCLC Communications Template (to be uploaded when you apply)
21st CCLC Assurances and Agreements (to be uploaded when you apply)
Previous Sustainability Form (to be uploaded by prior grantees)
Collaborative Signature (to be uploaded when you apply)
Iowa 21st Century Funding Estimator (Use this spreadsheet to calculate your award)
Evaluation and Professional Development Support
Local Evaluation Form (required for all local evaluations)
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.
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-XVIII: Iowa provides a 5 year grant. In years 4 and 5 the funding is reduced 25% and we have a sustainability meeting as part of the 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.
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