The Afterschool Advisor 

March 2014

In This Issue
Register Now for Impact After School
Expanded Learning Day at the Capitol
It's Campaign Season!
Grant Opportunities
Upcoming Professional Development Opportunities


the Afterschool Advisor

The Afterschool Advisor is a publication of the Iowa Afterschool Alliance for practitioners seeking resources to improve, sustain, and develop their afterschool program.

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Register by April 17 for the Impact Conference 

  April 24 - 25, 2014 

Stoney Creek Inn and Conference Center 

5291 Stoney Creek Court

Johnston, IA 50131

Register now! Space is Limited! 


Join other afterschool coordinators, administrators, front-line staff, and educators for professional development and networking!    

Click here for the full agenda and workshop topics!

Registration deadline: April 17


Participant Cost:

Regular registration (through April 17): 

$110 for Iowa and Minnesota 21CCLC Grantee Program Staff & Administrators

$150 for General Attendees


Late registration (after April 17 or at the door):

$130 for Iowa and Minnesota 21CCLC Grantee Program Staff & Administrators

$170 for General Attendees



Rooms are available at the Stoney Creek Inn for $99 per night (for April 23 and 24) until April 2. (After April 2, the special rate is subject to availability.) To secure this special rate, call 800-659-2220800-659-2220 and if you are an attendee from Iowa, mention the Impact After School Conference. If you are an attendee from Minnesota, mention the "Minnesota grantee group block" to make your hotel reservation. 


Questions? Contact Indira Blazevic at or 515-237-0324515-237-0324


Do you know an outstanding student?

The Iowa Afterschool Alliance is seeking nominations for Iowa afterschool stars, to be recognized as Outstanding Afterschool Students. Nominated students should be regular participants of the program and should model the qualities you strive for in your programming. The Outstanding Afterschool Students will be recognized at the conference during lunch on Friday, April 24.


Nominations should include the name and city of the nominated student and an explanation of why he or she is outstanding, accompanied by the nominator's name and program name. Email all nominations to Michelle Rich,
Iowa 21st Century Community Learning Centers

Expanded Learning Day at the Capitol    

The IAA and friends were at the Iowa State Capitol on March 25 for an Expanded Learning Legislative Breakfast! Out-of-school time program providers, student participants, partners, and advocates talked with legislators about the important role of expanded learning opportunities that help students succeed. Thank you to all who participated!

Students from the PIECES afterschool program in Burlington were recognized in the Iowa House of Representatives! With the students is Major Darren Grimshaw from the Burlington Police Department, a partner of the afterschool program.

Burlington students and IAA network coordinator Michelle Rich talk with Representative Kevin Koester (who is also an IAA board member) during the legislative breakfast.

It's Campaign Season! Time for Site Visits!    

The state legislative session is coming to a close and many of your legislators will be campaigning in your district. Many others outside of the Legislature are also running. This is a perfect time to engage all candidates and raise awareness of afterschool in our communities!

Important Dates:
June 3, 2014 = Primary Elections
November 4, 2014 = General Elections

Primary elections determine a political party's "pick" for the general election. The main parties contending in the primaries are the Democratic Party and the Republican Party. Be sure to engage all of them - you don't know who will win!

The General Election is where the parties' "picks" compete for a single seat, or elected position like representative or senator. Following the primaries on June 3, you will know who the final candidates are to compete for the positions. This is when it will be easier to engage targeted candidates because the field is narrowed to just a few people.

What can I do to engage the candidates?
Campaigning is tough, but they gotta get out there! Both state seats and Congressional (federal) seats are on the ballot. Ask them to visit your site one afternoon or over the summer. Have them participate in an activity with the kids. And be sure to ask the media to attend! Get lots of pictures and be sure to explain the impact you are making. This isn't just about public awareness. It's also your chance to raise the awareness of the candidate and their staff. They may be making very important decisions in the future!

How do I contact the candidates?
Usually each candidate has a website exclusively for campaigning. All candidates can be found by visiting the Iowa Secretary of State website. Right now, only primary candidates are listed. After June 3, a General Election candidate list should be available. 

Current elected officials have contact information on the Iowa General Assembly's website at Congressional office holders have contact information available through

What does a site visit look like?

Back in 2011, Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds visited Des Moines students during a STEM activity at an afterschool program. She had fun! And the kids were able to show off their learning to a person with influence. Have information ready in a packet to give to the candidate. Then just chat with them about what you do, your impact, and any support you may need. Remember, they may be making important decisions one day!

Where can I go for help?
The Iowa Afterschool Alliance can help. Contact Michelle Rich at We're here to help if you need!

Grant Opportunities

Ordered by Deadline
Wellmark Foundation Grant Program

Deadline: Letter of Intent due May 6, 2014 (submission of full proposals by invitation only following Letter of Intent) 

The Wellmark Foundation's Matching Assets to Community Health (MATCH) grant program aims to help improve the health of Iowans by providing financial and technical assistance. This challenge grant approach specifically seeks to help recipients use a grant-funding award from The Wellmark Foundation to leverage other funding to support a health promotion project. Funding focuses on programs targeting childhood obesity prevention and community-based wellness and prevention. Specific preference for this funding is to advance work in: 1) 

Promoting active living and built environments, or 2) Increasing access and consumption of nutritious foods.

For more information visit the Wellmark Foundation website here.


Federal Funding Guide for Reading Proficiency 

The Finance Project has developed a guide to federal funding sources for reading initiatives, LEARNING TO READ: A Guide to Federal Funding for Grade-Level Reading Proficiency.  


This guide to more than 100 federal funding sources helps state and local officials, leaders of community-based and national organizations, school leaders, and private investors find funding to strengthen and sustain grade-level reading programs and services for children from birth through third grade.


Child & Adult Care Food Program

Reauthorized by Congress under the "Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010," this federal program provides meals and snacks for school-age youth in afterschool programs.  


Find out more by visiting the Iowa Department of Education website.   


Iowa Grants Guide Online

The Iowa Grants Guide is a web-based directory of Iowa grant-making organizations. Program information only is provided; grant applications are not. Click here for the Iowa Grants Guide. Federal Funds Search Engine

Click here to search federal grant opportunities with a tool that lets you filter results by topic, such as Afterschool, Positive Youth Development, or Service Learning.  


Spark Grant Finder Tool

This online tool locates national and state-specific grants for physical education, afterschool, early childhood and coordinated school health programs. Search for grants here.  

Professional Development Opportunities
Ordered by Scheduled Dates
The Iowa Afterschool Alliance keeps a calendar of opportunities regularly updated on our website. Visit it at

Iowa Statewide STEM Conference

March 28, 2014; Des Moines

Join the Governor's STEM Advisory Council for the Third Annual Iowa Statewide STEM Conference. A profile of the Governor's STEM Advisory Council programs and setting course for the future of STEM in Iowa will be the key components of the day's agenda. Iowa's own Ben Milne, founder of Dwolla, will keynote. Click here for the full agenda. Educators, business leaders, school administrators, parents, active learning community partners, policy makers and other interested parties are all welcome to join in the conversation about STEM. Registration is free - register here. Further information regarding directions, parking, lodging, etc. can be found on the registration site above. 


2014 National Science Teachers Association National Conference

April 3-6, 2014; Boston

The National Science Teachers Association is asking you save the date for its national conference in April 2014! The current "strands/tracks" planned are: Science and Literacy: A Symbiotic Relationship; Teaching Elementary Science with Confidence!; Leading from the Classroom; and Engineering and Science: Technological Partners. Learn more and register here.

2014 Iowa Impact After School Conference 
April 24-25, 2014; Johnston, IA
Join other afterschool coordinators, administrators, front-line staff, and educators for two full days of professional development and networking! See the IAA website for the full agenda, and then click here to register!


Adolescent Health & Development Training 
May 22, 2014; 9:30-11:30 a.m.; Des Moines The Iowa Department of Public Health is offering a free training on adolescent health and development for anyone who works with older youth. Effectively supporting young people - their health, education, future prospects - means working from a real understanding and appreciation of who young people are and what's going on in their lives as they grow and develop through their adolescent years. Understanding adolescent and young adult development is a necessary first step that drives the implementation of evidence-based health programs and policies in ways that effectively reach and engage youth. This developmental approach has been identified through research as a component of effective youth health programs. In this session, participants will participate in a developmental timeline activity that can be used to help program staff and community members better understand and apply adolescent development to their work, both professionally and personally. Whether you work on adolescent health programming, or just have a young person in your life, this training is for you! 

Course Objectives:

  • Engage with the development process across the lifespan, with a specific focus on adolescence and young adulthood, adolescent development and sexual health.
  • Understand the stages and tasks of adolescent development.
  • Discuss the impact of the adolescent's world on their development and the impact of their development on how they interact with their world.

Presenters: Mary Greene, Addie Rasmusson, Bureau of Family Health, Iowa Department of Public Health.


To register for this free training, email Marilyn Alger,

Blank Park Zoo Educator Workshops 
Various dates in June-August, 2014; Mason City, Carrol
l, or Tiffin, IA
The Blank Park Zoo invites educators and out-of-school time program providers to professional development workshops this summer. Learn lessons and activities for your program that are connected to the Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards, learn research-based instructional practices, and gain knowledge and ideas that will be useful in your programs. Lessons are flexible, allowing teachers/providers to adjust for students' abilities, and relate to all age groups in several subject areas (science, literacy, mathematics, social studies, and the arts).

All workshops are two days, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. both days, with the following dates, locations, and topics:
  • June 11-12 - Swan Lake State Park, Carroll - Habitats and Adaptations
  • June 17-18 - F.W. Kent Park, Tiffin - Climate Change
  • July 8-9 - Swan Lake State Park, Carroll - Climate Change
  • July16-17 - F.W. Kent Park, Tiffin - Habitats and Adaptations
  • August 6-7 - Lime Creek Nature Center, Mason City - Conservation - People and Animals

See workshop descriptions and register here. Cost is $20 per workshop and includes breakfast and lunch each day, materials to use in your program/classroom, and a free Zoo animal program visit for your program/classroom. Teacher license renewal credit is available. With questions, contact Kathy McKee at 515-974-2557 or

NIOST Summer Seminars
July 14-18, 2014; Brookline, MA (near Boston)

The National Institute on Out-of-School Time offers a series of professional development courses for afterschool providers. NIOST Summer Seminars provides hands-on learning opportunities for youth development professionals to enhance their summer and school year programs. You can attend one, two, or all three.  
  • APAS (A Program Assessment System): For those interested in program assessment, learn how to use the tools and receive your free copy.
  • Advanced APAS Implementation: Take your organization to the next level in this interactive seminar where you'll practice how to collect and use data to strengthen your program and promote youth outcomes.
  • Courage to Lead: A one-day leadership retreat to recharge and energize your focus and passion on your work.

Visit the Summer Seminars webpage for more information and pricing.

Save $175 with Early Bird registration before April 30th.

Online Courses for 21CCLC Professionals

Short online courses are available for 21st Century Community Learning Centers program staff through You for Youth, the U.S. Department of Education's website for 21CCLCs. Courses cover topics like Project-Based Learning, Aligning with the School Day, STEM, and Strengthening Partnerships. Each course takes less than an hour and is available 24/7.  

The Iowa Afterschool Alliance seeks to improve access to high-quality afterschool programs for all Iowa children, youth, and families through policy and partnerships, practice support and outreach and engagement.

To contact the IAA:

Michelle Rich, Iowa Network Coordinator 
2910 Westown Parkway, Suite 302
West Des Moines, IA 50266
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