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After School Programs 2021 - Legislative Report

The 2021 Report to the Legislature, Legislative Analyst's Office and the Governor regarding characteristics of schools and students participating in After School Programs.

Executive Summary

The California Department of Education (CDE) oversees the most extensive system of high-quality after school programs in the nation through two initiatives: (1) the state-funded After School Education and Safety (ASES) Program for students in grades kindergarten through nine and (2) the federally funded 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) Program, including the After School Safety and Enrichment for Teens (ASSETs) Program for high school students. In the 2018–19 academic year, these programs operated at over 4,500 sites and served over 880,000 students in grades kindergarten through twelve (K–12).

Senate Bill (SB) 1221 (Hancock), Chapter 370, Statutes of 2014, signed by the Governor on September 16, 2014, requires the CDE to submit a biennial report to the California State Legislature regarding the type, distribution, and quality of these programs and the characteristics of the students participating in them, including their number and demographics, program attendance, academic performance, behavior, and skill development.

The first biennial report submitted in compliance with this statute summarized analyses of the 2015–16 academic year data, which had become available through the CDE’s improved data collection efforts. The analyses compared schools that received CDE grant funding for Expanded Learning Programs (ELPs)—which include after school, before school, and summer programming—to other non-grantee schools. The analyses also compared students participating in ELPs to nonparticipating students. The evidence documented in that report indicated that the CDE’s ELPs were reaching economically disadvantaged students and students of color and that, overall, CDE grantees had a positive impact on an important outcome indicator: school attendance.

This second biennial report summarizes analyses of the 2018–19 academic year data (the most recently available data). Improvements to data collection resulted in enhancements in data quality and allowed for more specified data analysis. The results of the 2018–19 academic year analyses from the second biennial report show that the CDE continued to provide funding for after school programs that served economically disadvantaged students and students of color. Further, the 2018–19 academic year analyses show that ELP participants attended an average of up to 1.5 percent more school days compared to their nonparticipating peers.

This second biennial report also provides an updated introductory overview of the importance of ELPs, the characteristics of high-quality programs, and the commitment and actions that the CDE has made through its Expanded Learning Division (EXLD) to ensure that ASES and 21st CCLC grantees serve students most in need and that these programs meet the highest quality standards. This report confirms that California still not only leads the nation in the scale and scope of its ELPs but also plays a national leadership role as a model for quality-improvement efforts.

Report to the Legislature, Legislative Analyst's Office and the Governor: Characteristics of Schools and Students Participating in After School Programs 2021 Report (DOCX; 2MB)

Questions:   Expanded Learning Division | expandedlearning@cde.ca.gov | 916-319-0923
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, November 30, 2022