March 2022
Upcoming Event
The Iowa Children's Museum Online FunLAB: Tips for Providing Virtual and Collaborative Programming

Join us for the next virtual quarterly STEM Learning Community Discussion on Thursday, April 14, 2022 from 1-2 p.m. The COVID-19 pandemic has been a challenge to informal educators by limiting how we can serve the community. In this workshop, we will share with you what we have learned about how to navigate virtual programming in order to make it engaging for any age audience. We will also share how we have pivoted to offer collaborative programs with community organizations. Bring your programming questions and possible collaboration questions and we will do our best to address them!
Iowa Afterschool Alliance News
Closing Soon: Submit Your Interest Now for AmeriCorps Members at your Afterschool Program this summer

It's hard to believe we already need to look ahead to summer, but with it comes an exciting opportunity to receive additional support with Summer Ladders! Through the Iowa Afterschool Alliance’s AmeriCorps Summer Ladders program, you can add a new leader to your summer afterschool program team focused on capacity building for your organization. This member will assist you and your summer site by developing lesson plans and implementing activities with youth.

From the end of May through to August, AmeriCorps members will each receive a stipend of $4,086, the equivalent of $13.62 per hour to cover living expenses. That’s a $1,086 living allowance increase from the previous year’s allowance, thanks to the additional support we have secured through combined federal COVID relief and Volunteer Iowa grants and funding. The cost-share to host a member (the amount you will be responsible for as a host site) is $2,183 for the entire summer (300 hours of service) – which breaks down to $7.27 per hour.

We have limited spots available! If you are interested in recruiting some members this year, please complete the short survey or contact Britney Appelgate at with your interest before March 25, to be considered for the program.

Meeting the Moment: Cities Increase Investments in Young People to Support Pandemic Recovery and Beyond

National League of Cities National Municipal Afterschool & Summer Learning Survey captures the evolution of afterschool and summer learning programs across the country over the pandemic. Findings underscore that, in a time of great hardship, city leaders believe afterschool and summer programs are more important than ever and are key assets in their communities to support children and youth. The report includes 8 key findings from the survey and 10 action steps for municipal leaders who seek to expand or improve their community’s afterschool and summer learning programs. Learn more and share the report with your city leaders.

Power of Us Workforce Survey: Calling All Youth-Serving Professionals and Volunteers

Every person who works with young people is committed to helping them thrive. On athletic fields, in afterschool programs, in libraries, in faith-based institutions, youth-serving professionals and volunteers are making a difference every day. Through the Power of Us Workforce Survey, youth-serving professionals and volunteers can contribute to a national effort to explore, define, and elevate their profession. Take the survey today!

Policy Update
Congress Increases Funding for Afterschool and Summer Learning Programs

Congress gave the country’s students, families, schools, and communities a significant boost by including a $30 million increase for the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) in the FY2022 federal budget. The funding bill passed Congress March 11 and was signed into law March 15. This will allow the chief federal funding stream for afterschool and summer learning programs to support programs that serve approximately 30,000 more students, providing them with homework help, hands-on learning opportunities, engagement in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and physical fitness, access to mentors, college and careers, and more. Learn more here.
White-Riley-Peterson Policy Fellowship Nominations

The White-Riley-Peterson Policy Fellowship develops emerging policy leaders with policy and advocacy-related knowledge and tools in the field of afterschool and expanded learning. Please consider nominating an individual who will help advance the policy work of the Network. The Fellowship will begin in late summer with pre-work and pre-reading. The 2022-2023 Wite-Riley-Peterson Policy Fellowship fall intensive will take place at Furman University in Greenville, SC, on these dates: Sunday, September 11 through Friday, September 16. The fellowship will meet monthly for webinars and gather in the spring 2023 at the 50 State National Network conference in D.C.

The deadline for nominations is May 15th, 2022. For more information about nominating and application forms click here.

Grant Opportunity
NEA Foundation Learning & Leadership Grants

NEA Foundation Learning & Leadership Grants summer 2022 applications are open. This grant is intended to provide resources for educators hoping to engage in professional learning that can be implemented in their classrooms. Learning & Leadership grants will fund projects between $1,500 and $5,000. Grants fund activities for 12 months from the date of the award. Applications will close May 1.

Learn more and apply here.
Inclusion Spotlight
Managing American Spaces Resource Toolkit

March is Women’s History Month. The Managing American Spaces Resources Toolkit contains lesson plans, discussion guides, posters, social media, and movies about the struggle for women’s equality in the United States, as well as, women’s rights globally. This Resource Toolkit is designed to create a greater awareness of the importance of women's rights globally and the struggle of American women to achieve greater equality.

STEM Opportunities
Engineer for the Week

Meta’s Engineer for the Week demystifies engineering for learners historically underrepresented in STEM and inspires them to use technology for social impact. The program introduces learners to the power of STEM and provides a pathway for them to create real impact in their communities. Click here to learn more about this free STEM program and how to become a facilitator.
Promote STEM Learning

MGM and PEAR will host a one-hour call entitled, "Promoting STEM Learning and Quality in Out-of-School Time (OST): Tools and Services Provided By PEAR Through the Million Girls Moonshot" for Networks to learn more about elevating STEM learning and quality, gathering evidence and available tools and services offered by PEAR. We will share implementation strategies and discuss how individualized PEAR data collection and support could look like in your state. Join the meeting on Tuesday, March 29 at 1 p.m.
Professional Development Opportunities
National Summer Learning Association Boot Camp
Join the National Summer Learning Association’s free and virtual Summer Planning Bootcamp March 30-31, 2022, to gain tools and best practices to meet this moment head on. Led by dynamic out-of-school time leaders, sessions will delve into strategies to accelerate learning, build critical partnerships, and plan successful strategies to scale impact in a sustainable and measurable way.

The two-day event is for anyone who cares about summer learning and is welcome to attend! Leaders from schools, community-based programs, camps, libraries, outdoor education programs, and more. If you are working with youth during the summer months, you will benefit from these ideas and strategies.

To learn more, visit and register today!
Join the Discussion: Celebrate Women in STEM
Join Rio Salado College as they host a webinar on "Women in STEM Careers" to celebrate Women's History Month. The STEM-focused (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) event will be held on Thursday, March 24, 2022, from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. The event will feature keynote speakers Nichole Neal and Dr. Tara Nkrumah. Register for the discussion here
2022 BOOST Conference
BOOST Collaborative will host their annual BOOST Conference on April 26-29, 2022, in Palm Springs, CA.
Join the largest, most recognized, and comprehensive global convening for after school, expanded learning, and in and out-of-school time professionals. Set in a retreat-like atmosphere, this annual, extraordinary event will rejuvenate your passion, boost your direction for quality programming, and provide tools and resources that will inspire you to create change.
To learn more, visit and register your team today! Registration questions? Reach out to
Education Senior Program Manager
State Public Policy Group (SPPG) is accepting applications for an Education Senior Program Manager. SPPG is looking for an organized self-starter with passion and experience in education and/or youth development. Join SPPG in serving the interests and well-being of the community through our issue-based projects and solution-focused clients. Learn more about the position and how to apply here!
Out of School Time Professional Development Center
The Out of School Time Professional Development Center provides Out of School Time training to OST professionals. The classes provide in-depth curriculum and certificates. If you or your staff are interested in signing up for courses visit the Out-of-School Time website. Check out the entire course catalog here
Great Content on Y4Y!
You 4 Youth is a free online professional development site that is designed to support 21CCLC program staff but is a valuable tool for any afterschool professional looking to build their skills! Recently, Y4Y has rolled out a whole module on literacy. Click here to register.
Afterschool Alliance Webinars
The Afterschool Alliance offers webinars on a wide range of topics, from policy and the new Every Student Succeeds Act, to STEM and Social-Emotional Learning. Find out more on their webinars website
Iowa Child Care Training Registry
Find professional development for school-age programming on the State of Iowa Child Care Training Registry on topics ranging from health and safety to developmentally appropriate programming. Find out more online.
National AfterSchool Association PD Resources
NAA provides afterschool professionals with resources to stay up-to-date on the latest topics in afterschool and summer learning. Find out more on their website here
Resources for STEM Programming
The Center for the Advancement of Informal Science Education (CAISE) provides background information that is useful for the development of STEM programming. Find out more on their website.
The Afterschool Tech Toolkit aims to empower afterschool professionals and educators with strategies and training so they can provide students with access to technology outside of classroom hours. It includes training modules on getting started, training staff, accessing technology, and devices, and more. Take a look at the toolkit here.  
Need technical assistance? Access to materials? Professional development or trainings for your team? Please or email all inquiries to
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