Empire State After-School Program Will Serve 4,250 Additional Students Statewide
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced $6.8 million in Empire State After-School Program funding has been awarded to 15 high-need school districts and community-based organizations across the state. This funding will support the availability of 4,250 new slots to these programs, bringing the total number up to 89,000. This funding, in addition to the $2.4 million awarded to Long Island in September, brings the total expansion to $10 million. With last year's $35 million commitment, the total number of Empire State After-School awards now totals $45 million.
"After-school programs not only help students stay on track outside the classroom, but offer at-risk youth the opportunity for socialization and access to critical services they may not otherwise receive," Governor Cuomo said. "By bolstering our after-school programs across the state, we can guide even more students toward the path to success and ensure each and every New York student has the opportunity to thrive."
"This funding will continue to expand after school programs for students in high-need areas across the state," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. "We want to ensure that children in underserved communities have the same access and opportunities to programs and resources that will help them grow both inside and outside the classroom. This investment is an investment in our youngest New Yorkers and the future of New York State."
First announced in January as part of the Governor's 2018 State of the State, funding was enacted in the 2018-2019 Budget allowing districts to receive five-year grants of $1,600 per student. Districts must adopt quality indicators assessing environment, staff-to-student interaction and student outcomes.
Research shows that children who participate in quality afterschool programs have higher school attendance, academic achievement, and are less likely to be involved in risky behaviors during the afterschool hours.
Acting State Office of Children and Family Services Commissioner Sheila J. Poole said, "After school programs improve academic and social success in children. And, parents have peace of mind in knowing that their children are being cared for in a safe and nurturing environment that is also fun and enriching. The variety of offerings in after-school programs help children explore new activities and interests in addition to what they learn during the school day."
Board of Regents Chancellor Betty A. Rosa said, "Strong afterschool programs provide a wide range of benefits for the children and families who need it most. When we can increase access to these safe, educational opportunities, we're lifting up the entire community and ensuring peace of mind for working parents. It's a critical investment in the future of our children."
State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia said, "Support for our students and families in need cannot end when the dismissal bell rings. Community-based after-school programs like these actively engage students in age-appropriate educational and recreational activities, and offer families opportunities for meaningful engagement in their children's education. The Board of Regents and I are grateful to Governor Cuomo for providing critically needed resources to prevent violence and keep our students involved in safe, productive activities."
- New York City School District (Queens District 27) - $502,400
- Children of Promise, NYC (Bronx District 09) - $320,000
- The Sports & Arts in Schools Foundation Inc. (Queens District 30) - $672,000
- New York Center for Interpersonal Development, Inc. (Staten Island District 31) - $256,000
- New York City School District (Manhattan District 05) - $582,400
- East Side House, Inc. (Bronx District 07) - $360,000
- CareerVisions - NY, (Bronx District 11) - $288,000
- Maspeth Town Hall, Inc. (Queens District 24) - $800,000
- Sunnyside Community Services, Inc. (Queens District 24) - $160,000
- Schenectady School District (Schenectady) - $798,400
- Oswego County Opportunities Inc. (Fulton) - $104,000
- Yonkers City School District (Yonkers) - $800,000
- YWCA of Western New York (Lackawanna) - $398,400
- Cornell Cooperative Extension Association of St. Lawrence County (Parishville-Hopkinton) - $174,400
- Mount Vernon City School District (Mount Vernon) - $584,000
Importance of Afterschool
According to the Office of Child Development- University of Pittsburgh, afterschool programs give children the opportunity to thrive in an environment that encourages exploration and creative expression. They provide inspiring and enriching activities that the kids cannot receive elsewhere. Afterschool programs allow children to discover their potential and uncover their interests and be a part of his/her own community. Afterschool is a structured and resourceful environment that invests in a child's development - from social emotional development, to better understanding of their interests and goals, to identifying their likes and dislikes, to valuing team efforts and taking chances in a safe environment where they are mentored and encouraged.