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Addressing policy challenges to summer meal access this year

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Addressing policy challenges to summer meal access this year

During the past two years as COVID-19 impacted schools and work, afterschool and summer learning programs stepped up by helping to provide meals to children and families in need. Last spring 57 percent of programs were providing meals to families at sites or through delivery; and last summer 65 percent of programs provided on-site snack or meals to students, according to the Afterschool Alliance program provider tracking survey.

Many programs were able to make nutritious meals available to students because of Summer Food Program and CACFP Afterschool Meal flexibility waivers provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) through authority granted by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act passed in March 2020. Those waivers are set expire to June 30, 2022, even though ongoing staffing and supply chain challenges have continued to make traditional meal service exceedingly difficult for many programs and schools. Without the authority from Congress to extend child nutrition waivers, many programs that have had the flexibility to serve all children in need in their community will likely have to scale back their meal service.   

Last week, Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) and Senate Afterschool Caucus Co-Chair Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) sought to address the challenges anticipated this summer by introducing the Support Kids Not Red Tape Act. The legislation would enable children to maintain continued access to child nutrition programs as families, schools, afterschool and summer programs, and child care providers recover from and respond to the economic, health, and educational fallout from the pandemic.

Congress previously gave the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) the authority to issue nationwide child nutrition waivers through the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which has allowed school nutrition programs, local government agencies, and nonprofit organizations to keep feeding children in the face of numerous challenges such as school closures, virtual learning, and the need to social distance. A recent USDA survey found that nearly 90 percent of school districts used the Seamless Summer Option (SSO) waiver to serve meals for the school year 2021-2022, which allows schools to offer all students meals at no charge and has provided higher reimbursement rates which have been needed to support nutrition finances during the pandemic. Similarly, community-based programs have struggled with increased food costs, shortage of key meal items, and staffing shortages.

The Afterschool Alliance and nearly 2,000 national, state, and local organizations from every state across the country, and the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, have urged Congress to swiftly extend USDA authority to issue nationwide waivers for the Child Nutrition Programs beyond this school year. Without Congressional action, the waivers are set to expire on June 30, 2022. 

The bipartisan Support Kids Not Red Tape Act would allow USDA to equip program providers with the flexibilities needed to meet the rise in food insecurity and supply them with much-needed relief by allocating additional funding to support nutrition finances. The legislation has 50 co-sponsors including most Democratic Senators in addition to Sens. Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Collins (R-Maine), signaling the urgent need to extend USDA waiver authority as families and the nation recover from the pandemic. Quick action by Congress to pass this legislation is needed to reach families as they continue to face the economic hardships of the pandemic this fall, and to help programs providers who are currently making plans for summer meals. 

FY 2024 Appropriations update: Six spending bills passed; new deadline for education spending

Crisis averted. Yet again. The first week of March was another “shutdown week” in Washington, D.C. However, by week’s end, the House and Senate had passed a package of six appropriations bills that headed off a partial federal government shutdown, as funding for four spending...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/13/24

Biden administration releases FY 2025 budget proposal, includes afterschool related increases

Today, the Biden administration released its Fiscal Year (FY) 2025 discretionary budget request, formally kicking off the FY2025 appropriations process. With regard to afterschool and summer learning support, the proposal requests $1.3 billion for afterschool and summer programs funded through the...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/11/24

Office of Child Care finalizes their rule on the Child Care and Development Funds

The heavily anticipated CCDF Final Rule regulating Child Care and Development Funds became public on February 29, 2024. The Office of Child Care has a page outlining the changes and will be offering a webinar to the field on March 7 from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. EST. The rule creates new conditions...

BY: Jillian Luchner      02/29/24

New draft for comment of Child Care Development Plan pre-print for 2025-2027

The Office of Child Care has published a much-revised draft of the CCDF Plan Pre-Print for comment. Comments will be due on February 21. The new pre-print aims to streamline some of the requirements in the former plan and prioritizes some important areas by clearly defining how states may...

BY: Jillian Luchner      02/12/24

Afterschool and summer learning called out in Improving Student Achievement agenda

Earlier this month the Biden administration announced a new effort focused on providing students with the support they need to accelerate learning and be successful in school and life. The Improving Student Achievement Agenda for 2024 was launched at the White House on January 17 and is focused on...

BY: Erik Peterson      02/01/24

Changes coming to summer meals program for summer 2024

While snow is on the ground in many parts of the country, it is not too early to think about summer learning and enrichment program planning, and how to ensure nutritious meals are part of all comprehensive summer learning programs. On December 29, 2023, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA)...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/22/24

Extending the liquidation deadline of ESSER III funds to promote student success

Last week, the U.S. Department of Education released a letter sent to state education agencies outlining the process for requesting American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER III) funding extensions. The process will be similar to what was announced for ESSER I and...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/19/24

Appropriations update: Countdown till next CR deadline

Update – March 1, 2024: Today the Senate followed the House in passing a fourth continuing resolution which extends FY 2024 federal government spending to March 8 for four appropriations bill and March 22 for the remaining eight bills. This prevents a partial government shutdown from...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/18/24

Child Care Development Plan Cycle for 2025-2027 begins now with stakeholder input

Happy 2024! A new year is a time for new beginnings, strengthening what has worked, and changing what we need to improve upon. Child care policy is undergoing its own new year’s revisions, and as key stakeholders, school-age child care providers and afterschool and summer programs serving...

BY: Jillian Luchner      01/05/24

House Education Committee advances workforce bill

On December 12, 2023, the House Education and the Workforce Committee, led by Chairwoman Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.) and Ranking Member Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-Va.) passed H.R. 6655, A Stronger Workforce for America Act by a vote of 44 to 1. The bipartisan legislation reauthorizes...

BY: Erik Peterson      12/21/23

FY 2024 Appropriations update: Six spending bills passed; new deadline for education spending

Crisis averted. Yet again. The first week of March was another “shutdown week” in Washington, D.C. However, by week’s end, the House and Senate had passed a package of six appropriations bills that headed off a partial federal government shutdown, as funding for four spending...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/13/24

State of the Union recognizes importance of summer learning programs

Last Thursday night, March 7, President Joe Biden delivered his annual State of the Union address to Congress. The president’s address centered on what he considers to be historic achievements he delivered for the American people and his vision for the future. Specific achievements mentioned...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/12/24

Appropriations update: Countdown till next CR deadline

Update – March 1, 2024: Today the Senate followed the House in passing a fourth continuing resolution which extends FY 2024 federal government spending to March 8 for four appropriations bill and March 22 for the remaining eight bills. This prevents a partial government shutdown from...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/18/24

Child Care Development Plan Cycle for 2025-2027 begins now with stakeholder input

Happy 2024! A new year is a time for new beginnings, strengthening what has worked, and changing what we need to improve upon. Child care policy is undergoing its own new year’s revisions, and as key stakeholders, school-age child care providers and afterschool and summer programs serving...

BY: Jillian Luchner      01/05/24

House Education Committee advances workforce bill

On December 12, 2023, the House Education and the Workforce Committee, led by Chairwoman Virginia Foxx (R-N.C.) and Ranking Member Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-Va.) passed H.R. 6655, A Stronger Workforce for America Act by a vote of 44 to 1. The bipartisan legislation reauthorizes...

BY: Erik Peterson      12/21/23

FY 24 Appropriations update: Continuing Resolution, education spending bills, and… shutdown averted?

Update – Nov. 16, 2023: Last night the ‘two-tiered’ Continuing Resolution that will keep federal funding intact until Jan. 19, 2024, (for Military Construction-VA, Agriculture, Energy and Water, and Transportation-HUDs) and until Feb. 2, 2024, (for all other federal agencies...

BY: Erik Peterson      11/15/23

Federal appropriations update: Are we headed for a shutdown?

Congress is back in session after its annual August recess, and at the top of their to-do list is addressing spending for the fiscal year that begins October 1. As we touched on last month, lawmakers are staring down a fast-approaching deadline for action on FY 2024 spending. It is clear that...

BY: Erik Peterson      09/15/23

Summer is ending! What is the status of appropriations for STEM education on Capitol Hill?

As is the case each August, Congress has left Washington D.C., for several weeks. The month’s slower pace gives STEM, education and afterschool advocates an opportunity to digest what happened in the frantic days before the recess and assess what remains to be done in 2023. The annual...

BY: Anita Krishnamurthi      08/28/23

Back to school means back to D.C. for Congress. What’s ahead in September?

The slower pace of August in Washington, D.C., is nearing its end. The imminent return of the U.S. Congress to Capitol Hill and the people’s business suggests the need for revisiting what lawmakers did before the August recess and what faces them in September. As students and teachers go back...

BY: Erik Peterson      08/25/23

Senate appropriators propose level funding for 21st CCLC in FY 2024

The Senate Appropriations Committee released and marked up their Labor, Health, and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (LHHS) bill on July 27, 2023. The bill proposes $224.4 billion in total funding for Fiscal Year 2024. The Nita M Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Center Initiative...

BY: Erik Peterson      07/31/23

FY 2024 Appropriations update: Six spending bills passed; new deadline for education spending

Crisis averted. Yet again. The first week of March was another “shutdown week” in Washington, D.C. However, by week’s end, the House and Senate had passed a package of six appropriations bills that headed off a partial federal government shutdown, as funding for four spending...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/13/24

Biden administration releases FY 2025 budget proposal, includes afterschool related increases

Today, the Biden administration released its Fiscal Year (FY) 2025 discretionary budget request, formally kicking off the FY2025 appropriations process. With regard to afterschool and summer learning support, the proposal requests $1.3 billion for afterschool and summer programs funded through the...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/11/24

Appropriations update: Countdown till next CR deadline

Update – March 1, 2024: Today the Senate followed the House in passing a fourth continuing resolution which extends FY 2024 federal government spending to March 8 for four appropriations bill and March 22 for the remaining eight bills. This prevents a partial government shutdown from...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/18/24

21st CCLC is 25: Join us in an upcoming year of visioning the future of 21st Century Community Learning Centers

As the year wraps up, we offer a final cheer in celebration of the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) initiative’s twenty fifth year! It was a year filled with an information packed 21st CCLC Summer Institute; the continuation of the federal Engage Every Student...

BY: Jillian Luchner      12/20/23

FY 24 Appropriations update: Continuing Resolution, education spending bills, and… shutdown averted?

Update – Nov. 16, 2023: Last night the ‘two-tiered’ Continuing Resolution that will keep federal funding intact until Jan. 19, 2024, (for Military Construction-VA, Agriculture, Energy and Water, and Transportation-HUDs) and until Feb. 2, 2024, (for all other federal agencies...

BY: Erik Peterson      11/15/23

Federal appropriations update: Are we headed for a shutdown?

Congress is back in session after its annual August recess, and at the top of their to-do list is addressing spending for the fiscal year that begins October 1. As we touched on last month, lawmakers are staring down a fast-approaching deadline for action on FY 2024 spending. It is clear that...

BY: Erik Peterson      09/15/23

Summer is ending! What is the status of appropriations for STEM education on Capitol Hill?

As is the case each August, Congress has left Washington D.C., for several weeks. The month’s slower pace gives STEM, education and afterschool advocates an opportunity to digest what happened in the frantic days before the recess and assess what remains to be done in 2023. The annual...

BY: Anita Krishnamurthi      08/28/23

Senate appropriators propose level funding for 21st CCLC in FY 2024

The Senate Appropriations Committee released and marked up their Labor, Health, and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (LHHS) bill on July 27, 2023. The bill proposes $224.4 billion in total funding for Fiscal Year 2024. The Nita M Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Center Initiative...

BY: Erik Peterson      07/31/23

ED extends time for comments on 21st CCLC Draft Non-Regulatory Guidance

Afterschool providers and allies now have until July 7 to comment on the 21st Century Community Learning Center (CCLC) Draft Non-Regulatory Guidance. We are grateful to the Department of Education for recognizing the significance of this updated guidance and providing additional time for feedback....

BY: Jillian Luchner      06/22/23

Congress passes deal to raise debt limit and constrain spending

UPDATE: June 2, 2023: Late on the night of June 1, the U.S. Senate passed the Fiscal Responsibility Act by a vote of 63-36, about 24 hours after the House passed the bill with a bipartisan vote of 314-117. The President is expected to sign the bill into law today. On May 31, the House passed the...

BY: Erik Peterson      06/01/23

Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro proposes $11.5 million in state funding for afterschool programs

Photo by Andre Frueh on Unsplash During Governor Josh Shapiro’s (D) budget address on February 6, a proposal for $11.5 million in state funding for afterschool programs was included, which would establish the first dedicated funding for afterschool in Pennsylvania. The proposal comes after...

BY: Chris Neitzey      02/08/24

Changes coming to summer meals program for summer 2024

While snow is on the ground in many parts of the country, it is not too early to think about summer learning and enrichment program planning, and how to ensure nutritious meals are part of all comprehensive summer learning programs. On December 29, 2023, the US Department of Agriculture (USDA)...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/22/24

Community schools: New grants, new legislation, continued synergy with afterschool and summer

Late last month, a new round of Full Service Community Schools grants were announced by the US Department of Education, including several state scaling grants for IL, ID, FL and NC. Also in late November, U.S. Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), and Ben...

BY: Erik Peterson      12/18/23

Year in review: 2023 state budget success

This year’s state budget session was one of the most impactful regarding growing investments in afterschool and summer programs at the state level. We saw newcomers join a growing number of states utilizing state funds to create afterschool funding streams. We also saw states with existing...

BY: Chris Neitzey      12/14/23

Office of Child Care inquiring what should be included in State Child Care Development Fund plans

Update – The Afterschool Alliance has drafted comments on this notice that can be reviewed here. The three-year cycle for State Plans for Child Care and Development funds is upon us, and the federal government is now providing an opportunity to comment on the form states must fill out to...

BY: Jillian Luchner      08/08/23

Empowering youth voices: Reflecting on the 2023 Youth Policy Forum

By Keem Anderson, associate director at Ignite Afterschool (MN). At Ignite Afterschool, Minnesota’s statewide afterschool network, we recently had the privilege of hosting our 2023 Youth Policy Forum, an event dedicated to amplifying youth voice, advocating for impactful policies that...

BY: Guest Blogger      08/07/23

2023 state budgets bring new investments in afterschool programs

The end of state legislative sessions have now come to a close in most states, and with this closure comes news of new states establishing afterschool funding streams or expanding existing ones in their state budgets. This year, four new states have joined a growing list of states that support...

BY: Chris Neitzey      07/11/23

Mental health and wellness a popular topic in state legislatures in 2023

Last year, as states grappled with ways to reengage students as the recovery from the pandemic set in, student mental health came to the forefront in many state legislatures. In Georgia last year, the state legislature passed HB1013, the Mental Health Parity Act, to address mental health...

BY: Chris Neitzey      05/11/23

State legislatures looking to increase investments in afterschool

We took at look at how governors across the country are supporting afterschool in a previous post, but what kind of progress is being made in state legislatures for afterschool? It turns out, quite a bit. Below is a sampling of the different bills that have been introduced in state legislatures...

BY: Chris Neitzey      03/24/23

Governors for afterschool – 2023 edition

Last year, governors from across the country highlighted the vital role afterschool programs play in their State of the State speeches and budget proposals. Some of these efforts led to new funding streams for afterschool, as in in Alabama and Michigan; expansion of funding in states like...

BY: Chris Neitzey      03/07/23

FY 2024 Appropriations update: Six spending bills passed; new deadline for education spending

Crisis averted. Yet again. The first week of March was another “shutdown week” in Washington, D.C. However, by week’s end, the House and Senate had passed a package of six appropriations bills that headed off a partial federal government shutdown, as funding for four spending...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/13/24

Biden administration releases FY 2025 budget proposal, includes afterschool related increases

Today, the Biden administration released its Fiscal Year (FY) 2025 discretionary budget request, formally kicking off the FY2025 appropriations process. With regard to afterschool and summer learning support, the proposal requests $1.3 billion for afterschool and summer programs funded through the...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/11/24

FY 24 Appropriations update: Continuing Resolution, education spending bills, and… shutdown averted?

Update – Nov. 16, 2023: Last night the ‘two-tiered’ Continuing Resolution that will keep federal funding intact until Jan. 19, 2024, (for Military Construction-VA, Agriculture, Energy and Water, and Transportation-HUDs) and until Feb. 2, 2024, (for all other federal agencies...

BY: Erik Peterson      11/15/23

Federal appropriations update: Are we headed for a shutdown?

Congress is back in session after its annual August recess, and at the top of their to-do list is addressing spending for the fiscal year that begins October 1. As we touched on last month, lawmakers are staring down a fast-approaching deadline for action on FY 2024 spending. It is clear that...

BY: Erik Peterson      09/15/23

Summer is ending! What is the status of appropriations for STEM education on Capitol Hill?

As is the case each August, Congress has left Washington D.C., for several weeks. The month’s slower pace gives STEM, education and afterschool advocates an opportunity to digest what happened in the frantic days before the recess and assess what remains to be done in 2023. The annual...

BY: Anita Krishnamurthi      08/28/23

Back to school means back to D.C. for Congress. What’s ahead in September?

The slower pace of August in Washington, D.C., is nearing its end. The imminent return of the U.S. Congress to Capitol Hill and the people’s business suggests the need for revisiting what lawmakers did before the August recess and what faces them in September. As students and teachers go back...

BY: Erik Peterson      08/25/23

Senate appropriators propose level funding for 21st CCLC in FY 2024

The Senate Appropriations Committee released and marked up their Labor, Health, and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (LHHS) bill on July 27, 2023. The bill proposes $224.4 billion in total funding for Fiscal Year 2024. The Nita M Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Center Initiative...

BY: Erik Peterson      07/31/23

House Appropriators mark-up FY 2024 Education spending bill

This week, the House of Representatives Appropriations Committee pushed the FY 2024 appropriations process forward by holding multiple subcommittee mark-ups. On Friday, July 14, the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education (LHHS-ED) and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee marked up its...

BY: Erik Peterson      07/14/23

Congress passes deal to raise debt limit and constrain spending

UPDATE: June 2, 2023: Late on the night of June 1, the U.S. Senate passed the Fiscal Responsibility Act by a vote of 63-36, about 24 hours after the House passed the bill with a bipartisan vote of 314-117. The President is expected to sign the bill into law today. On May 31, the House passed the...

BY: Erik Peterson      06/01/23

Making the case for increasing 21st Century Community Learning Centers funding

On March 23, Alabama Expanded Learning Alliance Co-director Felicia Simpson testified at a hearing of the House Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (LHHS-E) Appropriations Subcommittee in support of increased funding for Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/27/23

FY 2024 Appropriations update: Six spending bills passed; new deadline for education spending

Crisis averted. Yet again. The first week of March was another “shutdown week” in Washington, D.C. However, by week’s end, the House and Senate had passed a package of six appropriations bills that headed off a partial federal government shutdown, as funding for four spending...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/13/24

Comments sought on proposed change to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) regulations

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Administration for Children and Families (ACF) recently proposed changes to improve the effectiveness and integrity of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) regulations. This Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) is meant to help...

BY: Erik Peterson      11/21/23

Summer is ending! What is the status of appropriations for STEM education on Capitol Hill?

As is the case each August, Congress has left Washington D.C., for several weeks. The month’s slower pace gives STEM, education and afterschool advocates an opportunity to digest what happened in the frantic days before the recess and assess what remains to be done in 2023. The annual...

BY: Anita Krishnamurthi      08/28/23

Back to school means back to D.C. for Congress. What’s ahead in September?

The slower pace of August in Washington, D.C., is nearing its end. The imminent return of the U.S. Congress to Capitol Hill and the people’s business suggests the need for revisiting what lawmakers did before the August recess and what faces them in September. As students and teachers go back...

BY: Erik Peterson      08/25/23

Senate appropriators propose level funding for 21st CCLC in FY 2024

The Senate Appropriations Committee released and marked up their Labor, Health, and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (LHHS) bill on July 27, 2023. The bill proposes $224.4 billion in total funding for Fiscal Year 2024. The Nita M Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Center Initiative...

BY: Erik Peterson      07/31/23

House Appropriators mark-up FY 2024 Education spending bill

This week, the House of Representatives Appropriations Committee pushed the FY 2024 appropriations process forward by holding multiple subcommittee mark-ups. On Friday, July 14, the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education (LHHS-ED) and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee marked up its...

BY: Erik Peterson      07/14/23

Congress passes deal to raise debt limit and constrain spending

UPDATE: June 2, 2023: Late on the night of June 1, the U.S. Senate passed the Fiscal Responsibility Act by a vote of 63-36, about 24 hours after the House passed the bill with a bipartisan vote of 314-117. The President is expected to sign the bill into law today. On May 31, the House passed the...

BY: Erik Peterson      06/01/23

March madness = Budget & appropriations process kickoff!

This year, early March means the release of the president’s budget proposal for the upcoming fiscal year and the beginning of the FY 2024 appropriations process in Congress. Here's what we know so far about how this year’s process may roll out in the coming year.  On or...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/01/23

STEM education update: Good news and looking ahead

In the final weeks of 2022, Congress passed a $1.7 trillion spending bill to fund every agency through the end of fiscal year (FY) 2023. The bill was the product of weeks of negotiations and defense spending, supporting the CHIPS and Science Act and some policy issues attached to the bill took...

BY: Anita Krishnamurthi      02/23/23

Mammoth spending bill includes support for afterschool, summer, mentoring, and more

In December, the 117th Congress approved a $1.7 trillion bill that included a $40 million increase for the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) initiative and additional increases across the US Department of Education important to afterschool programs, public schools,...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/23/23

White House Domestic Policy Council focuses on summer learning

Photo by René DeAnda on Unsplash On March 13, just days after the administration released their FY 2025 budget proposal, the White House Domestic Policy Council (DPC) hosted a Summer Learning Convening in the White House Executive Office Building. The meeting was kicked off by DPC...

BY: Erik Peterson      03/18/24

Afterschool and summer learning called out in Improving Student Achievement agenda

Earlier this month the Biden administration announced a new effort focused on providing students with the support they need to accelerate learning and be successful in school and life. The Improving Student Achievement Agenda for 2024 was launched at the White House on January 17 and is focused on...

BY: Erik Peterson      02/01/24

Extending the liquidation deadline of ESSER III funds to promote student success

Last week, the U.S. Department of Education released a letter sent to state education agencies outlining the process for requesting American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER III) funding extensions. The process will be similar to what was announced for ESSER I and...

BY: Erik Peterson      01/19/24

21st CCLC is 25: Join us in an upcoming year of visioning the future of 21st Century Community Learning Centers

As the year wraps up, we offer a final cheer in celebration of the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) initiative’s twenty fifth year! It was a year filled with an information packed 21st CCLC Summer Institute; the continuation of the federal Engage Every Student...

BY: Jillian Luchner      12/20/23

New law clarifies the use of federal funds for archery and other programs

Image by 422737 from Pixabay Last week, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed the “Protecting Hunting Heritage and Education Act” (H.R. 5110). The law specifically allows schools to use federal education funds for archery, hunting, or other shooting sports. The bipartisan legislation...

BY: Erik Peterson      10/04/23

Beyond relief – New tools to help sustain the impactful pandemic investments in afterschool and summer

Children’s Funding Project, in collaboration with Grantmakers for Education and our team at the Afterschool Alliance released an important new tool for the field, “Funding Out-Of-School Time Programs – Now and in the Future.” Recognizing that COVID-19 education and child...

BY: Jillian Luchner      09/29/23

OST college preparation programs close opportunity gaps for students of color

On June 29, 2023, the United States Supreme Court ended the use of race-based admission policies at higher education institutions. As an advocate for equitable education and a current college student who comes from a background that would qualify me to be a beneficiary of affirmative action, I am...

BY: Mazzi Ingram      08/22/23

ED extends time for comments on 21st CCLC Draft Non-Regulatory Guidance

Afterschool providers and allies now have until July 7 to comment on the 21st Century Community Learning Center (CCLC) Draft Non-Regulatory Guidance. We are grateful to the Department of Education for recognizing the significance of this updated guidance and providing additional time for feedback....

BY: Jillian Luchner      06/22/23

Your feedback needed on 21st Century Community Learning Center draft non-regulatory guidance

UPDATE: The deadline has been extended from June 16th to July 7th. The U.S. Department of Education is accepting feedback through June 16, 2023, on Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) Draft Non-Regulatory Guidance PDF. This represents the first time in 20 years that...

BY: Erik Peterson      05/22/23

Department of Education calls for commitment of community service across universities

College students have long played an important role in supporting younger youth. The afterschool field has benefited from these student’s expertise, enthusiasm, diversity, and near-peer levels of mentorship for decades. Now, a nationally organized initiative is working to ensure more...

BY: Jillian Luchner      05/17/23