The Texas 21st Century Community Learning Center program, also known as Texas Afterschool Centers on Education (ACE), is a grant program administered by the Texas Education Agency (TEA) and funded by the U.S. Department of Education. The ACE program is one of the largest statewide afterschool programs, serving over 180,000 students across nearly 1,000 sites. The program aims to improve student outcomes along a number of measures, including academic performance, attendance, behavior, promotion rates, and graduation rates. These objectives align with the Texas Education Agency’s goal of ensuring that all students are college- and career-ready.

Texas ACE Grantees offer free afterschool programming to economically disadvantaged schools along the following four areas:

  • Tutorials for students before and after school
  • Enrichment activities for students to explore science, technology, and the arts
  • Activities and training that help families support their students to be successful at school
  • Guidance and field trips that help students and their families access information about college and careers.

This year, Safal Partners is leading Texas 21st CCLC program monitoring. The Texas Education Agency partners with multiple contractors to conduct monitoring and offer technical assistance, professional development, and general program support to Grantees. The Safal Team has been contracted for this school year to assist TEA in monitoring the status of each Grantee’s program implementation according to their respective application, federal and state requirements, and research-based practices. The monitoring process sets the stage for the development of an intentional technical assistance plan for each Grantee, provides baseline information for future Quality Assurance evaluations, and identifies exemplary practices and effective, research-based strategies implemented by ACE Grantees.

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