James E Moss Elementary is a diverse elementary school in the South Salt Lake area. This year we were able to partner with Promise South Salt Lake to provide afterschool programming to our students. In just one year we have had over 100 students enroll in the program with a long wait list. But, afterschool isn’t just a nice supplement to the school day, it is a crucial part of ensuring that students reach their educational potential!
Students who are a part of the afterschool program are exposed to enrichment programs such as coding, Lego League, science club, service club, cooking classes, and recreation. The list goes on. They are served a dinner which helps their minds and bodies grow, and they are able to work with teachers on developing their educational skills through homework help and small group work.
- 71.9 percent improved their math grades
- 76.6 percent improved their English/language arts grades
In addition to these staggering statistics, there are also the intangible benefits of afterschool. Benefits such as parents knowing their children are in a safe place after school, students being served a nutritious dinner, and students building respectful and health relationships with their peers and adults. According to a report by the Afterschool Alliance, in Utah, 71 percent of parents surveyed agree that afterschool programs help working parents keep their jobs. In just one-year Moss Elementary has seen the potential positive impact that afterschool can have on not just our students but our community.
One of the main funding mechanism for afterschool programming comes from the federal 21st Century Community Learning Center (21st CCLC) program. Unfortunately, this program is at risk of elimination, which would negatively impact not only the students and families at Moss Elementary, but students around the state.
In Utah, there are 9,870 students from 150 high-poverty communities who benefit from 21st CCLC programs who could be left without a reliable afterschool choice. A cut to the program will disproportionately affect students and families living in poverty. Families at Moss Elementary and in our community count on afterschool to keep children safe and provide them with opportunities and experiences outside of the regular school day.
If we, as a community, are serious about changing the odds and making sure all of the children in our communities have the tools to succeed we must fight for afterschool programming.
Please take action today and let your congressperson know that 21st CCLC funding is important to you and our community.