Jefferson, Horace Mann Receive 21st CCLC Grant Worth Up to $1.3 Million
Shawnee Public Schools has been awarded its fifth Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers grant for Horace Mann and Jefferson Elementary Schools.
"We are excited to continue providing our 21st Century Community Learning Center program," said Dr. April Grace, superintendent. "These funds help us meet an important need for our students and families with extended time beyond the school day during the year and unique offerings during the summer months."
The program, called Super, Powerful, Sharp Kids Club (SPS Kids Club), provides $300,000 each year for three years with an option for $240,000 each year for years four and five during the life of the grant, depending on the success of the program.
The latest grant award allows the district to continue offering the SPS Kids Club program at each elementary site. Horace Mann and Jefferson are both previous recipients of the 21CCLC grant. Sequoyah and Will Rogers Elementary Schools are currently in the third year of their grant.
Each SPS Kids Program serves approximately 100-125 students per year during the after-school and summer programs. The program employs highly qualified certified teachers and assistants as well as site coordinators and a program director to oversee the programs and components of the grant.
The Nita M Lowey 21st CCLC grant is a federally funded reimbursement grant that supports the creation of community learning centers that provide academic enrichment opportunities during non-school hours for children, particularly students who attend high-poverty and low-performing schools. The program helps students meet state and local student standards in core academic subjects, such as reading and math; offers students a broad array of enrichment activities that can complement their regular academic programs; and offers literacy and other educational services to the families of participating children.
Goals for the 21st CCLC programs include:
- Goal 1: Improve academic and non-academic outcomes for regularly attending students.
- Goal 2: Promote a physically and emotionally safe place to attend and continual instruction to promote healthy bodies, minds, and habits.
- Goal 3: Provide opportunities for parents and students to learn and connect with their community together.
- Goal 4: Build organizational capacity to deliver high-quality programming to all participants attending 21st CCLC programming.
Students participating in the SPS Kids Club program beginning in the fall of 2021 will experience higher level thinking skills and activities such as computer coding, robotics, engineering, drones, hands-on math, science, technology, writing, speaking and student choice clubs.
One requirement of the grant is community partnerships. The district is excited to welcome back current community partners as well as a couple of new partners, including Community Renewal of Pottawatomie County, Gateway to Prevention, Shawnee Youth Coalition, Neighboring 101 – Bridges Out of Poverty, Gordon Cooper Technology Center, Oklahoma Baptist University American Reads, Legacy Parenting and Community Market. Community partners will provide mentoring, a summer sports and arts camp, community service projects, tutoring, and family resources and engagement.
Other requirements of the grant include after-school specific professional development opportunities each year for all staff, an annual self-assessment, and second and third year external assessments for use in improving the program. In addition, transportation home from the after-school program and to and from the summer program are available for students who qualify.