ESL Afterschool Communities


ESL Afterschool Communities (ESLAsC) is an outreach initiative in the Center for Workforce Development that joins at Columbus State Community College with the city's large immigrant and refugee (I/R) population. ESLAsC introduces the College to the community and helps underserved students discover that college is a possibility and exciting opportunities are available through education. ESLAsC has developed a community-based, comprehensive program of support and education at three sites within Franklin County. The afterschool programs provide a safe, caring environment where children are able to develop academic, social and personal skills that will last a lifetime.

ESLAsC are unique in that all three sites are located within the apartment complexes where most participating students reside, eliminating transportation challenges. This also allows for more parent, family and community interaction and engagement. ESLAsC strives to serve I/R students and their families where they are: Physically, Culturally, and Academically.

  • PHYSICALLY: we are located in the community room of the apartment complex where they reside; we visit the students and parents in their homes daily
  • CULTURALLY: we respect, appreciate and celebrate all cultures
  • ACADEMICALLY: we tailor activities and curriculum to individual needs; we are in constant contact with classroom teachers, volunteering weekly

Bending Brook students


  • Year-round academic programming using scientifically based research (SBR) curriculum aligned to Ohio's Common Core Standards which increases student's learning time and skill sets in reading fluency/language arts and mathematics. Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) skills are an important focus that is weaved throughout all curriculum planning.
  • Character education programs which promote resiliency factors, self esteem, positive identity exploration and life skills through healthy food, recreational activity, prevention programs, leadership training, volunteer service, career exploration and field trips.
  • Promotion and assistant with parental involvement and engagement at home and school. Building stronger communities by offering regular home visits, adult basic ESL classes, family math and literacy nights, social service referrals, sewing classes, parent education workshops, community field trips and the establishment of community gardens.


Progress toward our goals is measured annually using qualitative and quantitative measures. Ongoing program data provides timely information for strategic impact and analytical reviews for improving service allowing each site to adapt to its communities' needs and maintain program success.

In 2012, ESLAsC served 183 2nd-8th grade students attending Columbus City, South-Western City and Charter/Communities schools.

  • 47% of ESLAsC students increased their OTELA scores
  • 29% increased their OAA scores (36% scored proficient or higher in both math and reading)
  • 94% of ESLAsC students increased their reading levels
  • 48% increased reading grades/GPA
  • 49% increased math grades/GPA


  • ESLAsC model selected for a study commissioned by U.S. Department of Education as a promising 21st CCLC practice.
  • Received a Dollar General grant and partnered with Columbus Metropolitan Libraries to implement summer reading program.
  • Completed a 3 year grant/research study with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services-Office of Minority Health—indicating successful innovative models for reaching youth and changing high risk behaviors—the data can be reviewed at
  • Presented ESLAsC model of programming at U.S. Department of Education 21st CCLC National Conference.