The legislation authorizing CCLCs stressed collaboration with nonprofit organizations and businesses and focused on an array of activities much broader than academic supplementation. Relatively little collaboration exists in practice, however, and an academic focus predominated most of the first phase of funded programs. Most of the sites are quite new, since the program first received substantial funding in FY 1998. It appears that more enrichment and collaboration are occurring as the sites are gaining experience. The U.S. Department of Education, which administers the program, has contracted with Mathematica Policy Research to conduct a four-year evaluation; however, there is no outcome information as yet (McCallion, 2000).
The Clinton administration reauthorized the program in 1999 with the following new provisions: allowing grants for up to five years, requiring local matching grants, making nonprofit organizations eligible for up to 10 percent of the grants (with the concurrence of the local school district), and targeting grants explicitly to inner cities, small cities, and rural areas. Some in Congress have suggested that as the program gets larger, it will become unwieldy to require applications directly to Washington, D.C. Instead, they have suggested that the program should be converted to a formula mechanism, which would decentralize decisions about grantees to the state or the local level (McCallion, 2000).
Programs include a variety of approaches. Michigan State University, for example, received an $8.2 million CCLC grant to expand its Kids Learning in Computer Klubhouses (KLICK!) program from 9 to 20 middle schools around the state, and from 1,600 to 11,000 students. The program gives low-income students experience with computers, digital equipment, and robotics (Girod and Zhao, 2000). Good Shepherd Services, a respected youth-serving agency in Brooklyn, New York, received $865,015 to expand its work in four low-income elementary schools, enabling it to offer Saturday programming, to upgrade its computer training activities, and to add more activities and services for parents (Gonzalez, 2000).
A significant partnership with the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation has been critical to the implementation of the CCLC program. Mott has committed nearly $100 million over a seven-year period (began in 1997) to two entities that offer training and assistance to CCLC applicants and grantees and to the Afterschool Alliance, an alliance of government and private-sector partners that is dedicated to increasing public awareness of the need for such programs (Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, 2001).