This February, Brighton Park Neighborhood Council (BPNC) will apply for Illinois State Board of Education 21st Century Community Learning Center (21st CCLC) grant funding to support the agency’s Full-Service Community School Initiative (FSCSI) partnerships at Brighton Park Elementary and Curie Metropolitan High School.
The 21st CCLC grant program is authorized under Title IV, Part B of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as amended by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. The purpose of the program is to create community learning centers that provide academic enrichment opportunities for children, particularly students who attend high-poverty, low-performing schools, to meet State and local standards in core academic subjects. Grant-funded programs also offer students a broad array of enrichment activities to complement schools’ regular academic programs while offering literacy and other educational services to the families of participating children.
BPNC’s Full Service Community Schools provide opportunities for academic enrichment and community development by developing programs for students and families that emphasize increased literacy, artistic expression, math instruction, peer mentorship, leadership development, and English proficiency. BPNC will apply grant funding to create additional supports for middle school students as they transition into high school. These services are clearly needed by students in the community, though many Chicago Public Schools do not have the resources to deal with students’ overwhelming needs. BPNC’s FSCSI partnerships were created to increase the resources of schools in order to address these needs.