How To Apply - 21st Century Community Learning Centers

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21st Century Community Learning Centers

2500 North Lincoln Boulevard, Suite 414
Oklahoma City, OK 73105

Phone: 405-522-6225  
Fax: 405-522-2269 

The Application Process

Before beginning the application process, carefully review the Preparing to Write the Grant link. Grants will be awarded pending the availability of federal funds. A visual flowchart of the application process is available here

To successfully submit an application for the 21st CCLC grant, the following steps must be completed:

Step 1: ALL applicants MUST complete the Letter of Intent form.

Every grant applicant whether a school district or a community-based organization MUST complete a Letter of Intent form and submit it before proceeding to the on-line system to begin writing the proposal. Failure to submit a Letter of Intent prior to the deadline will invalidate your application.

  • Letter of Intent form (link)

  • The Letter of Intent form must be submitted by the deadline determined at the time of the grant application is open.

Step 2: Obtain Grants Management System Access


The 2016-2017 grant applications for 21st CCLC funding will be completed through the on-line Grants Management System (GMS). All non-district organizations will request log-in credentials from the 21st CCLC office to gain access to the GMS. Please complete the Credential Request form, sign it, and email a scanned copy to:

  • Credential Request Form

  • When your credentials have been assigned, the chief official of your organization will be contacted by phone and given the credentials for all users in the organization, along with a link and instructions on how to access the GMS directly.

  • Credential Requests must be submitted by the deadline determined at the time the grant is open.


The application is available in the Grants Management System. Please continue to refer to the USDE and OSDE Grant Guidance throughout the  application process. Every grant application submitted must be an original application.

  • Non-district community-based organizations can access the application through the direct link to the Grants Management System provided by the 21st CCLC office.

  • School districts can access the GMS through the Single-Sign On system. The application may be found under Competitive Grants, 21st Century.

Grant Application Deadline:

  • The application must be submitted by the deadline determined at the time the grant is open.  At that time, the system will be closed and no other applications will be accepted.

*For questions, please check the Applicant FAQs page.


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Preparing to Write the Grant

21st Century Community Learning Center (CCLC) programs provide safe, enriching learning opportunities for students during their out-of-school time.  This may include before school, after school, summer and school breaks.  Through community partnerships, these programs are designed to offer students’ academic enrichment through hands-on, project-based and active learning strategies.  As a supplemental program, the 21st CCLC design should align with or complement regular academic programming, but not replicate it.

Eligible applicants must propose to serve students who attend a school site that is eligible for designation as a Title I school-wide program.

Faith-based and community-based organizations may apply in partnership with a local school district. Applicants may apply to serve students from up to two (2) school sites with the grant. For purposes of this grant a school site will be defined using the school site listing as posted on the OSDE School District Directory.

The 21st CCLC grant opens every spring dependent upon available federal funding. If you would like immediate notification when the grant opens, please sign up for the e-newsletter in the bottom right corner of the front page of the OSDE website. 

Throughout the year prior to writing an application, prospective applicants are encouraged to:

  • Develop an advisory committee
  • Conduct a needs assessment
  • Engage community partners and stakeholders
  • Develop proposed program design

Advisory Committee

The establishment of an advisory committee is a requirement of this grant. This committee should meet together regularly and play a key role in writing and implementing the 21st CCLC grant proposal. The role of an advisory committee is to function as a leadership group to the 21st CCLC; advising and guiding the school administrator, program director, and staff in the areas of but not limited to: community engagement and support, conducting needs assessments, grant and program development, obtaining resources, and strengthening assets. It is encouraged that the advisory committee be involved in major aspects of the program and regularly participates in events, activities, and various aspects of the program as needed and to fulfill their role. Throughout the term of the grant, the advisory committee will be expected to remain deeply engaged in the development, implementation and evaluation of the program.

Program monitoring and evaluation are two of the most important aspects of a quality 21st CCLC program. The advisory committee should plan to participate in monitoring visits, and attend training on and participate in program evaluation to gain understanding of the full scope of the program development.

If a grant writer is used, the advisory committee should work closely with that person to ensure that a reasonable, consistent, and original application is submitted.

  • Grant funds cannot be used to pay for a grant writer
  • Awarded applicants will be held to the application that was submitted
  • Grant writer must be identified
  • Advisory Committee must be involved in writing the grant

Every grant application submitted must be an original application.

Needs Assessment

Use specific, relevant, and current data regarding the students and families to be served by the project, including recent community needs assessments and an inventory of community assets/resources. The application must accurately reflect the unique demographics and formally identified needs of the applicant district and sites.

Engaging District Financial Officers

Prospective applicants are encouraged to engage LEA financial officers in the application process. A thorough knowledge of current financial supports will reduce the risk of supplanting funds, ensuring that all proposed items in the budget are reasonable, necessary, and appropriate. Financial officers of school districts will also be familiar with Oklahoma Cost Accounting System (OCAS) coding requirements, ensuring correct coding and budgeting procedures from the beginning.

Grant Guidance

The 21st CCLC grant is a federal grant and therefore adheres to very specific parameters in certain areas. We strongly encourage prospective applicants to gain thorough knowledge and understanding of both the USDE Guidance and the OSDE Guidance before applying.

*For any questions along the way, please check our Applicant FAQs page.


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Last updated on July 28, 2016