The purpose of Georgia’s Title IV, Part B, 21st Century Community Learning Centers Program is to provide federal funds to establish or expand community learning centers that operate during out-of-school hours and that have three specific purposes:
- To provide opportunities for academic enrichment and tutorial services
- To offer students a broad array of additional services, programs, and activities to reinforce and complement the regular academic program; and
- To offer families of 21st CCLC students opportunities for literacy and related educational development.
Any public or private organization is eligible to apply for a 21st CCLC grant. Examples of agencies and organizations eligible under the 21st CCLC program include, but are not limited to: LEAs, non-profit agencies, city or county government agencies, faith-based organizations, institutions of higher education, and for-profit corporations.
States must give competitive priority to applications that both propose to serve students who attend schools identified for improvement (pursuant to Section 1116 of Title I) and that are submitted jointly between at least one LEA receiving funds under Title I, Part A and at least one public or private community organization. Although the statute provides an exception to this requirement for LEAs that do not have qualified community organizations within reasonable geographic proximity, such LEAs would still have to propose to serve students attending schools identified for improvement to qualify for the priority.
The legislation allows States to award grants for not less than 3 years and not more than 5 years. States can determine the appropriate length of the grants they award within the statutory parameters. Georgia funds programs for 5 years.