Bensalem Township School District awarded a $500k grant

The Pennsylvania Department of Education has announced that the Bensalem Township School District, after a competitive application process, has been awarded $500,000.00 through the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) grant.

Other Bucks County recipients include the Morrisville Borough School District, Bucks County Technical High School, and the Bristol Borough School District.

In total, more than $19 million for the 21st CCLC grants were awarded to nine school districts, three intermediate units, eight charter schools, two institutions of higher education, and 22 community-based organizations.

What is the 21st Century Community Learning Centers Grant?

The 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) grant is a competitive grant that provides federal funding to establish community learning centers that provide academic, artistic, and cultural enrichment opportunities for students and their families.

These are afterschool and summer programs that offer students a broad array of activities that complement their regular academic programs, as well as offer literacy, and other educational services to their families.

STEM programming is a priority focus for Pennsylvania’s 21st CCLC programs.

Pennsylvania state results from the 2016 Afterschool and STEM System Building Evaluation (80 percent of the respondents were 21st CCLC programs) revealed that students who participated in STEM-focused afterschool programs made a positive impact on their 21st-century skills, including perseverance, critical thinking, and quality of relationships with adults and peers.

21st CCLC grants are the only federal funding source dedicated exclusively to providing afterschool and summer learning opportunities for children and youth and are currently the only dedicated source of funding for afterschool in Pennsylvania.

“The 21st Century Community Learning Centers grant program helps provide students with a broad range of services and resources that will help them to achieve more throughout their schooling,” said Acting Secretary of Education Eric Hagarty. “Without this grant, students could miss out on some of the important opportunities and services that help them reach for success during their academic careers.”

Over the last 10 years, unmet demand for afterschool programs grew by 20 percent, but funding has remained flat.

In addition to academics, 21st CCLC grantees may also offer a broad array of other services and programs, such as counseling, character education, drug and violence prevention, art, music, recreational activities, and technology education.


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