The Ohio Department of Education has announced the grantees awarded federal funding for the 21st Century Community Learning Center (21st CCLC) program. One of those recipients is Mansfield City Schools.

The program creates or expands community learning centers that provide academic enrichment and youth development opportunities for students who attend predominantly high-poverty and low-performing schools.

Thirty-four new award recipients were selected from more than 244 applications through a comprehensive peer review process. Priority was given to programs that serve students in rural schools. In addition 185 grantees received continuation funding based on prior year grant awards. The Department awarded $43,312,638.30 in new and continuing CCLC grants for Fiscal Year 2020.

The purpose of the 21st CCLC program is threefold. All funded programs must:

  • Provide opportunities for academic enrichment to assist students in meeting the state academic standards;
  • Offer students access to a broad array of additional services, such as those that focus on youth development, social-emotional learning, civic engagement, and nutritional and physical health;
  • Offer adult family members of program participants opportunities for educational development and engagement in their children’s education.

“Learning doesn’t end when the school day ends. The strong local partnerships that provide expanded learning opportunities funded by this grant demonstrate a community-wide commitment to supporting student learning,” Paolo DeMaria, state superintendent of public instruction, said. “These grants align beautifully with our strategic plan, Each Child, Our Future, which values partnerships and a focus on equity. When students have more time to learn, especially when it’s part of an engaging before- or after-school program, they are able to better meet their learning goals.”

All programs must be implemented through a partnership that includes at least one school and one community organization with a demonstrated record of success in designing and implementing before-school, after-school, summer learning or expanded learning time activities.

The Mansfield Middle School 21st Century Community Learning Center began in 2018 after an initial $850,000 grant was received from the State of Ohio to help at-risk middle school students. It partners Mansfield Schools with the North End Community Improvement Collaborative (NECIC) with a goal of boosting academic performance through STEM support, project based learning, and more.

The new grant will provide a $200,000 boost to the local effort.

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