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COMMISSIONER SUFFREDIN SPONSORS RESOLUTION ENCOURAGING CONGRESS TO FUND AFTERSCHOOL PROGRAMS

Tuesday, December 16, 2003
Special to suffredin.org

December 16, 2003, Cook County, Illinois: Today, the Cook County Board passed a resolution sponsored by Cook County Commissioner Larry Suffredin, D-13th District, requesting Congress to continue financial support for the 21st Century Learning Center Program. All County Commissioners co-sponsored the resolution.

"With this resolution, we are encouraging President Bush and Congress to fully fund the 21st Century Learning Center Program in fiscal year 2005 at the $2 billion funding level authorized by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001," Suffredin said.

21st Century Learning Center grants provide much needed support for afterschool programs that provide academic assistance to struggling students and provide a safe place for children to go after school.

Research shows that students have better academic performance, behavior and school attendance, and greater expectations for the future when they participate in quality afterschool programs.

"We are encouraging President Bush and Congress to fully fund this program at the $2 billion level because the demand for these funds greatly exceeds current funding levels and these are programs that have a proven record of success," commented Suffredin. In 2001, only 10 of the 123 Illinois communities that applied for funding received grants and in 2003, only 35 of the 157 Illinois applications were funded.

"We must do all we can to support afterschool programs that help children realize their full academic potential, keep kids safe, and help reduce incidents of juvenile crime."


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