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Grants to Illinois Schools and Community Organizations for Educational Enrichment Programs


Conference Date


Intent to Apply Date


Application Deadline

04/25/22 5:00 PM Receipt

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CFDA or PIN Number:

CFDA Number:


Funding or PIN Number:

CSFA No. 586-46-0423;


Geographic Focus

USA: Illinois

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Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC)

Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE)

Agency: State

GrantWatch ID #130091

Grant Description

Grants to Illinois LEAs, community organizations, tribes, and other public and private entities for educational programs that improve student success. Applicants are advised that required registrations must be completed prior to applying. Grants may be used to support a wide range of academic enrichment programs and services during non-school hours. Funding is primarily intended to benefit students from low-performing schools. Eligible activities may focus on areas that include, but are not limited to, youth development, physical fitness, tutoring, nutrition, health education, STEM, and drug and violence prevention.

The 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) program is designed to provide academically focused after-school opportunities, particularly to students who attend high-poverty, low-performing schools, to help those students meet state and local performance standards in core academic subjects and to offer families of participating students opportunities for literacy and related educational development.

The purpose of 21st CCLC programs is to provide opportunities for communities to establish or expand activities in community learning centers that:

  1. Provide opportunities for academic enrichment, including providing tutorial services to help students (particularly students who attend low-performing schools), to meet the challenging state academic standards;
  2. Offer students a broad array of additional services, programs, and activities, such as youth development activities; service learning; nutrition and health education; drug and violence prevention programs; counseling programs; arts, music, physical fitness, and wellness programs; technology education programs; financial literacy programs; environmental literacy programs; mathematics, science, and career and technical education (CTE) programs; internship or apprenticeship programs; and other ties to an in-demand industry sector or occupation for high school students that are designed to reinforce and complement the regular academic program of participating students; and
  3. Offer families of students served by community learning centers opportunities for active and meaningful engagement in their children’s education, including opportunities for literacy and related educational development. 

The purposes listed above for 21st CCLC are aligned to the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). 

21st CCLC programs may provide services for children in grades prekindergarten through 12. 

21st CCLC funds are available for professional development activities that support the delivery of high-quality programs.

For information about program objectives, see

For allowable activities, see

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  • Others (see text field entitled "Additional Eligibility Criteria" for clarification)

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible Applicants:

Public and private entities, including Local Education Agencies (LEAs), such as public school districts, public university laboratory schools approved by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), state-authorized* charter schools, area vocational centers, Regional Offices of Education, Intermediate Service Centers; community-based organizations (CBOs), including faith-based organizations (FBOs), Indian tribes or tribal organizations (as such terms are defined in section of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Act); and other public and private entities or a consortium of two or more such agencies, organizations, or entities are eligible to apply.

* Refers specifically to charter schools that are authorized by ISBE as opposed to charter schools authorized by LEAs. Charter schools authorized by LEAs are not eligible to apply independently from their authorizing LEAs.

Note: A charter school that is a 501(c)(3) may apply with a Regional Office of Education or Intermediate Service Center that is recognized as an LEA.

An applicant is not required to have previous experience in providing after-school programs; however, applicants lacking such experience must demonstrate in their proposals that they can be successful in providing educational and related activities that will increase academic achievement and enhance positive youth development of the students to be served.

A consortium of two or more eligible applicants may apply as co-applicants by submitting a joint proposal. Co-applicants in a consortium may submit multiple proposals. For more information about joint applications, see

Population to be Served: The law requires that 21st CCLC awards be granted only to applicants who will primarily serve students who attend schools with a high concentration of students from low-income families (defined as not less than 40 percent of the students being eligible for free or reduced-price meals). Each applicant must propose to serve high-poverty schools or schools eligible for schoolwide programs. Applications proposing services to schools with less than 40 percent low-income students as reported on the 2020-21 Illinois Report Card will not be considered.

All programs and services provided to students and their families must be secular, neutral, and non-ideological. No funds provided pursuant to the 21st CCLC program may be expended to support religious practices, such as religious instruction, worship, or prayer.

For Non-Allowable Uses of Funds, see

Pre-proposal Conference:

A virtual technical assistance session will be held at 10 am, March 17, 2022. Registration information is found at Attendance is not required.

Session recording and associated materials will be posted at the URL for Full Text link below.

Pre-Application Information:

Proposals can be submitted electronically through the ISBE Attachment Manager, mailed, or hand-delivered no later than 4 pm, April 25, 2022.

It is anticipated that successful applicants will receive a Notice of Award via email approximately 90 days after the application deadline.

Applicants who plan to submit a proposal are asked to send a letter of intent by April 8, 2022. The letter is not required to submit a proposal but is highly encouraged. Letters of intent may be emailed to the email address indicated in Contact Information below.

All questions asked concerning this NOFO/RFP will be responded to in a Frequently Asked Questions document found at the URL for Full Text link below so all respondents can see all questions and the responses to the questions. Changes to the FAQ will not be made after April 8, 2022. Applicants are advised to check the site before submitting a proposal.

Applicants will need to use their Region, County, District, Type (RCDT) code when applying. Applicants may verify their RCDT code at Applicants that do not have an RCDT code may email Kathryn Elvidge for information on how to establish an RCDT code.

Each applicant is required to:
(i) Be registered in SAM before submitting its application. If you are not registered in SAM, you may do so at;
(ii) Provide a valid DUNS number in its application (; and
(iii) Continue to maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times during which it has an active federal, federal pass-through or state award or an application or plan under consideration by a federal a federal pass-through or state award to an applicant until the applicant has complied with all applicable DUNS and SAM requirements.

Applicants may submit multiple proposals in response to this NOFO/RFP. Applicants are advised to review the specifications and proposal requirements. All proposals will be entered into the same competition for 21st CCLC funds. All applicants will be restricted to receiving a maximum of three funded grants in response to the proposals received for this NOFO/RFP.

Note: An applicant cannot propose to serve any school already receiving services under a 21st CCLC grant.

Legislation, Regulations, and Guidance:

Webinar recording:

Additional Funding Information:

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Annual grant awards will be a minimum of $50,000 and a maximum of $600,000, with individual awards not exceeding $150,000 per site (i.e., the physical location where grant-funded services and activities are provided to participating students and adults).

Funding tiers per site are as follows:
▪ $50,000 = 25-40 minimum students served 45 hours or more
▪ $75,000 = 41-55 minimum students served 45 hours or more
▪ $100,000 = 56-70 minimum students served 45 hours or more
▪ $125,000 = 71-85 minimum students served 45 hours or more
▪ $150,000 = 86 & up minimum students served 45 hours or more

Term of Contract:

The grant period will begin no sooner than July 1, 2022, and will extend from the execution date of the grant until June 30, 2023.

Applicants who propose to offer summer programs may request a two-month extension period from July 1 to August 31 in each year of the grant.

Successful applicants may reapply via continuing application for up to two additional years (i.e., FYs 2024 and 2025).

Funding in subsequent years will be contingent upon compliance with federal and state law, state grant-making rules, passage of sufficient appropriations for the program, and satisfactory performance in the preceding grant period. Funding in subsequent years will also be contingent upon a grantee’s ability to spend 85 percent of their funds in Year 1 and 92 percent in Year 2.

Contact Information:

Proposals can be submitted electronically through the ISBE Attachment Manager, mailed, or hand-delivered.

The ISBE Attachment Manager is found at

Mailed Proposals: Mail the original and one paper copy plus an electronic copy of the proposal on a USB flash drive to:

Kathryn Elvidge
Illinois State Board of Education
Wellness Department
Mail Code E-222
100 North First Street
Springfield, Illinois 62777-0001

It is advised to use certified mail with guaranteed delivery date and a return receipt requested.

Hand-Delivered: Proposals may be hand-delivered to the following location:

Springfield Office
Reception Area
1st Floor
100 North First Street

Phone: (217) 782-5270

For more information, contact Kathryn Elvidge at the phone number or email address indicated above. Email is the preferred method of contact.

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