APRIL 2021
The Synergy Conference 2021 will convene virtual April 27th through 30th, 2021. The conference timeline can be viewed herePlease note that the Tuesday (April 27) and Wednesday (April 28) portion of the conference will consist of the 21st Century Community Learning Center Statewide TA Meetings only. For those registered attendees that are not a part of a 21st CCLC program, the first live plenary of the Synergy Conference will begin at 9:30 am on Thursday, April 29, 2021. Please view the video below for highlights of this year's conference!
In addition to our live plenaries, this year's conference includes 55+ workshops with a range of topics in each of our workshop strands.
This year's conference will showcase SIX amazing vendors. Information for each vendor is presented below.
American Reading Company is a high-quality core curriculum serving over 5,000 schools nationwide. In addition to the core curriculum, the American Reading Company serves K-12 students in a variety of supplemental areas including intervention, enrichment, family literacy, and cultivating a love of reading. Their resources are highly customizable for program needs and are able to provide resources for a variety of implementations including before or after school programs. Their core belief is ensuring all students of this diverse world are represented in their resources.

Atlanta-based, Championship Chess, teaches chess to students in the Greater Atlanta area and also runs affiliate chess programs in other states. The Championship Chess standards-based curriculum is used throughout the U.S., and Georgia clubs and their coaches have won local, state, regional, and national awards and distinctions.

Growga is a curriculum creation and delivery program that brings SEL, yoga, and mindfulness to schools, organizations, and businesses to meet children and families where they learn, lead, and play.
The North Carolina Tennis Foundation (NCTF) was founded in 1961 and supports organizations and programs that enhance the lives of people through tennis and education. The NCTF partners with a variety of out-of-school time programs to introduce tennis to children of all ages and ability levels. The Foundation provides free training and access to grants to cover the cost of equipment for partner organizations.
Open worlds of discovery with Mizzen by Mott. Mizzen by Mott is a new app built with and for afterschool professionals to provide high-quality, engaging learning content to the field. Featuring exciting content from premier organizations like NASA, Jazz at Lincoln Center, California Academy of Sciences, kid-grit, and others. Mizzen brings you activities and lessons that boost STEM learning, language arts and literacy, and 21st-century skills.
The Walking Classroom provides a program of audio podcasts that students listen to while they walk. Walking while listening to educational podcasts is a powerful, engaging, screen-free experience for students to have right now. With The Walking Classroom, students in afterschool programs can walk, socially-distanced, while listening to the same standards-aligned, kid-friendly podcasts on topics including language arts, social studies, biographies, and science.
Registration is open for the Synergy Conference 2021! The registration fee for the virtual Synergy Conference 2021 is $75 per person. You can register for the virtual conference here. The deadline to register is April 23, 2021.
On March 4th, 2021, the NC State Board of Education approved the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI) to launch the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) Cohort 15 Competition for the 2021-2022 school year for any Public School Unit (PSU) or Non-PSU organizations [NPO, CBO, FBO, For-Profit, IHE, City/Local Gov].

Authorized under Title IV, Part B, of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015, the purpose of Nita M. Lowey 21st CCLC Programs is to provide federal funds to establish or expand community learning centers that operate during out-of-school hours providing three specific services: intentional academic support, quality enrichment experiences, and family engagement opportunities.

To determine the number of reviewers required to support the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction Cohort 15 Nita M. Lowey 21st CCLC Competition, potential applicants are encouraged to submit an electronic Notice of Intent by April 9th, 2021. Please note submission of a Notice of Intent is not a requirement to apply for the grant, nor does it obligate the organization to submit an application. The Notice of Intent form can be completed using this link: NCDPI Cohort 15 Nita M. Lowey 21st CCLC Competition - Notice of Intent Form.

The competitive grant opportunity will be processed through the CCIP system. Grant amounts will range from $50,000 to $400,000 depending on (1) the needs identified in the community and schools; (2) scope of the program; (3) the proposed number of students served; and (4) program design. Depending on funding availability, grant awards may continue for up to three years (through Summer 2024).
To encourage students to pursue science-related careers and businesses to continue investing in North Carolina, Governor Roy Cooper has declared April as STEM Education Month.
The North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs is a part of the Million Girls Moonshot, helping out-of-school time programs as they increase the quality of STEM learning opportunities for all young people, especially underserved and underrepresented youth.

The Moonshot seeks to re-imagine who can engineer, who can build, and who can make. It will inspire and prepare the next generation of innovators by engaging one million more girls in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) learning opportunities through afterschool and summer programs over the next 5 years.

Every state is asking afterschool and summer programs to share more about how they do STEM. Please join this important effort! Your answers will help us to better understand how we can best support afterschool and summer programs statewide. The survey should take 5 to 10 minutes to complete. Everyone who completes the survey will have exclusive access to a webinar on engaging kids in hands-on engineering activities from home and will be entered into a drawing for a $100 gift certificate.
As NC CAP continues to develop high-quality STEM content, it is vital to discover and map STEM assets throughout the state that youth, families, programs, schools, and communities can leverage. The STEM Asset Mapping Database will serve as a connector for individuals and entities engaged in STEM statewide. Specifically, this project will identify and map both county and statewide resources that can be leveraged to engage youth in STEM. To achieve this, NC CAP is collecting information on local STEM assets across North Carolina. If you would like to showcase a STEM asset in your community, please complete this form.

The STEM Asset Mapping Database will be launched during the Synergy Conference 2021. For questions about the STEM Asset Mapping Database, please contact Sheneika Simmons at
NC CAP is proud to showcase a new STEM Lesson, the Makey Makey Design Challenges. The Makey Makey Design Challenges lesson utilizes the Makey Makey Invention Kit to create simple circuits, practice math and literacy skills, create prototypes to solve real-world problems and present their prototypes in a "Shark Tank" demonstration.

To access the STEM lessons, click here. Each lesson includes Spanish translations.  

Please subscribe to the NC CAP Youtube Channel for more videos and resources!
The American Rescue Plan provides $500 billion that can be used to support young people during the hours they are out of school. Funds specifically available for afterschool and summer programs in the plan include:

  • $8.45B available from SEAs, including:
  • $1.22B set-aside for summer enrichment
  • $1.22B set-aside for afterschool programs
  • 5%, approximately, $6.1B, for learning recovery (afterschool/summer/ELT)
  • $22B provided to LEAs for learning recovery strategies, including afterschool and summer enrichment
  • $39 billion for child care, which can include school-age care, which will flow to state child care agencies
  • $1 billion for Corporation for National and Community Service through AmeriCorps for AmeriCorps positions to help address recovery and other purposes
  • $350 billion for state and local governments that can be used in part for child care and other purposes

Funding from the bill can be spent until September 2023. While the details have yet to be worked out on how these funds will flow to states, communities, and schools, there will be opportunities for afterschool and summer program providers of all kinds - including non-school, community-based organizations to access the funding.

To continue reading the article, click here.

Excerpt from:
NC CAP is proud to debut two new STEMinars with Science Action Club and ScholarStem.

In the Science Action Club STEMinar, viewers will take a sneak peek into the Science Action Club Citizen Science curriculum, specifically the Sky Survey Lesson with Olivia VanDamme, the Education Coordinator at Science Action Club. The lesson is free to access and can be conducted both in-person and virtually.

In the ScholarStem STEMinar, viewers will learn more about the ScholarStem content and ways they are supporting out-of-school-time providers in facilitating technology-based lessons with confidence.

To view the STEMinar episodes, click here.
National Youth Leadership Council is honored to host the 2021 National Service-Learning Conference, now in its 32nd year. This year's conference takes place from April 14th to April 15th, 2021.
This conference is more than workshops and keynote addresses; it is an extension of the classroom, allowing youth and adult attendees to be part of a national movement. Throughout the conference, youth plan programming, emcee plenary sessions, inspire attendees through keynote addresses, and lead workshops for youth and adult peers worldwide. Youth are allowed to create something so spectacular that it changes how adults perceive all young people - as solutions to real problems.

The conference's multiple-day, concurrent session format offers adults a self-directed facilitated learning environment with education sessions, discussion groups, and interactive workshops designed specifically for all levels of attendees engaged in service-learning and focused on current and emerging issues, best practices, and the challenges facing us today. Both youth and adults come out of the experience with the tools, resources, ideas, and inspiration to return home to improve their practice, their schools, and their communities. This year's conference will be entirely virtual and feature both live and on-demand sessions. Topics range from social-emotional learning and civic education to youth leadership and international service-learning. Whether you are new to
service-learning or an experienced practitioner, this conference has something for you.

To learn more about this opportunity, click here.
Curious about the Mizzen by Mott afterschool app? Get a jump on the latest content, playlists, and features in Mizzen for afterschool site managers, coordinators, and teachers.

Gearing up for Summer? Mizzen by Mott can help. The app, designed with and for the afterschool field, brings you and your team fun and engaging activities to help kids of all ages connect with learning, and Pro Tips, scheduling, and messaging tools to support program operations.

If you're teaching, coordinating, or managing an afterschool program that services kids in grades K-12, Mizzen can help you deliver an even more meaningful learning experience.

Download the app today from your preferred app store, click here to visit the Mizzen website, or check out the Mizzen By Mott workshop and vendor booth at the Synergy Conference 2021!
The North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs is celebrating Afterschool Professionals Appreciation Week on April 19th - 23rd, 2021, to recognize, appreciate, and advocate for those who work with young people during out-of-school hours. NC CAP is joining the effort because we believe Afterschool professionals make a profound difference in the lives of young people. We encourage you to join us in thanking the afterschool professionals in your life.

Here are some ideas on how you can show your appreciation:
  • Declare on social media: "I believe Afterschool professionals make a profound difference in the lives of young people. #heartofafterchool"
  • Give a hand-written card from you and/or your child to the afterschool professional in your life.
  • Send an email to an afterschool professional's supervisor describing why that person is appreciated.
  • Make healthy or non-food treats for the staff at your afterschool program.  

For more resources and information, click here.

This webinar will be geared toward summer program teachers, staff, and administrators to discuss all of the tools needed to "fine-tune your engine". Research tells us that summer program quality is highly dependent upon smooth operations. This tune-up will cover family outreach and engagement, PD, setting the tone for the first day, ensuring smooth scheduling and transitions, engaging in rapid cycle continuous improvement throughout the summer, and assessing the impact as the program ends. The goal is to improve the quality and experience for students, teachers, and families.

To register for this webinar, click here.
The University of Florida (UF) is seeking partner educators from afterschool programs to implement a NSF-funded afterschool curriculum to engage 3rd-5th graders in cryptology and cybersecurity to increase their awareness of these fields and their importance in our daily lives and of potential career opportunities associated with these fields. The curriculum is called CrytoComics and includes a digital comic book, unplugged activities, and technology-enhanced activities.

They have collaborated with afterschool educators in their area to design and pilot test this curriculum and are excited about how it engages children. They have also designed a guide for educators and a curriculum orientation with support from their local afterschool partners. UF is hoping to collaborate with afterschool educators outside of Florida who work with a wide range of students. The project will provide a stipend of $2,000 and a lot of support and materials.

If you are interested and meet the requirements, click here.
Applications to participate are due April 16th, 2021.
Enter the Possibility Grant Sweepstakes daily for your chance to win $5,000 for STEM at your school. This year, five Title 1 schools will have the opportunity to win the added STEM goodies that you have been dreaming of. This competition is open to all Title 1 schools. The competition closes on April 30th, 2021.

The Afterschool Advantage (ASA) program is IGT's flagship community initiative, devoted to providing young people with access to technology in a safe, nurturing afterschool environment while promoting opportunities in digital learning centers in communities where IGT operates. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

The Coca-Cola Foundation provides grants to a wide variety of 501(c)(3) organizations that focus on children, education, and/or health. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

Imagination Playground is an innovative design in play equipment that encourages creativity, communication, and collaboration in play. With a collection of custom-designed, oversized blue foam parts, Imagination Playground provides a changing array of elements that allow children to turn their playground into space constantly built and re-built by their imagination. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

The Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation seeks to dramatically improve people's lives and the world around us through innovative strategies, systems-changing approaches, and disrupting technologies. Their goal is to find social entrepreneurs with dynamic ideas and nurture them at the early stages with maximum leverage and total commitment. Draper Richards Kaplan aims to find exceptional entrepreneurs, provide them with three years of unrestricted capital, provide rigorous
ongoing support, and help build organizational capacity. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

The Max and Victoria Dreyfus Foundation awards grants to organizations for whom a small amount of money can make a big difference. The Foundation welcomes requests from museums, cultural and performing arts programs, schools, hospitals, educational and skills training programs, programs for youth, seniors, and the disabled, environmental and wildlife protection activities, and other community-based organizations and their programs. Applications are due May 10th, 2021.

The Office of Naval Research (ONR) recognizes the need to support efforts that can jointly improve STEM student outcomes and align education and outreach efforts with Naval Science and Technology's current and future workforce needs. Projects that improve the capacity of education systems and communities to create impactful STEM educational experiences for students. Applications are due March 30th, 2022.

The Power of Youth Challenge: Youth Leading Racial Healing is a leadership and service opportunity for youth-designed projects that promote racial equity and address systemic racism. The Challenge provides young people (ages 13-19) across the U.S. with the opportunity to identify a need in their communities related to racial healing and apply for a $250 grant to support a (COVID-safe) service project. In addition to building their own leadership, service, and career skills, grant winners will have the opportunity to increase understanding, communication, caring, and respect within their communities through service projects that address racial division and justice. Project ideas are due April 30th, 2021.

KABOOM! and their funding partners are excited to offer Imagination Playground and Rigamajig grants to qualifying U.S.-based organizations. KABOOM! offers grants for a variety of play opportunities for kids of many age ranges. From traditional playgrounds to STE(A))M and creative products, to physical fitness-promoting multi-sport courts and adventure courses for older kids and teens, as well temporary and permanent Play Everywhere installations bringing ways to play to spaces that are already part of a family's everyday routine. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

The Student STEM Enrichment Program (SSEP) supports diverse programs with a common goal: to enable primary and secondary students to participate in creative, hands-on STEM activities for K-12 students and pursue inquiry-based exploration in Burrough's Wellcome Fund home state of North Carolina. Applications are due on April 15th, 2021.

The Walmart Local Community Grants can support nonprofit organizations with programs that benefit communities within the service area they are requesting funds. All proposals should fall within Walmart's focus areas: community, sustainability, and career opportunity. Local community grants range from $250 to $5,000. Applications are due December 31st, 2021.
North Carolina Center for Afterschool Programs |