A project of the Afterschool Alliance.

21st Century Community Learning Centers External State-Wide Evaluation Report (Alabama)

Year Published: 2021

Students, teachers, families, and afterschool program staff reported mostly positive outcomes for students attending 21st CCLC program sites across the state of Alabama, even while COVID-19 proved to be challenging for programs nationwide. Students improved their math and reading through their afterschool programs and agreed that their programs were a place they could feel safe. Parents reported that their children improved their school day attendance, enjoyed the STEM opportunities available, and get along better with others through programming, and staff responded positively to survey questions about programs’ overall operations, and provided categories of professional development that would be beneficial for future program delivery. 

Program Name: Alabama 21st Century Community Learning Centers

Program Description:

Alabama’s 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) program, which receives federal funding through the 21st CCLC initiative, provides afterschool and summer academic enrichment opportunities for children at high-poverty and low-performing schools throughout the state. From fall 2020 to summer 2021, grantees operated 120 program sites across the state.

Scope of the Evaluation: Statewide

Program Type: Summer, Afterschool

Community Type: Rural, Urban, Suburban

Grade level: Elementary School, Middle School

Program Demographics:

Not available due to the COVID-19 pandemic 

Program Website: https://www.alabama21cclc.org/

Evaluator: Troy University’s College of Education

Evaluation Methods:

Evaluators collected all data through a data management tool called Qualtrics, and obtained student grades, GPA, attendance, demographic information, engagement, behavior, and parent/family views on how satisfied their children are with their afterschool program. The team also visited program sites across the state to conduct virtual and in-person interviews and focus groups around day-to-day operations, and student opinions, as well as administering a survey to learn more about staffing needs. Evaluators used this data to determine what impacts 21st CCLC programming is having across the state and outcomes for students.

Evaluation Type: Non-experimental

Below is a selection of evaluation data reported by the program around three major categories of youth outcomes—interest in STEM, capacity to productively engage in STEM, and finding value in STEM. These outcomes are an excerpt from a 2016 Afterschool Alliance paper, "The Impact of Afterschool STEM: Examples from the Field."

Interest: I like to do this

Capacity: I can do this

Value: This is important to me