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ESL Afterschool Communities

ESL Afterschool Communities (ESLAsC) is an area in the Community and Civic Engagement Division at Columbus State Community College (CSCC). It is an outreach initiative that introduces the College to the community and helps underserved students discover that college is a possibility and exciting opportunities lay ahead through education. ESLAsC has developed a community-based, comprehensive program of support and education at several sites within Franklin County.

Refugee and other immigrant children face language, cultural and financial barriers to learning. ESL Afterschool Communities is a bridge from school to home for their families, strengthening the connection between the two and addressing community issues.


To provide a safe, caring, respectful environment where children are able to develop academic, social and personal skills that will last a lifetime and provide opportunities for success as new Americans.

ESLAsC is unique in that most sites are located within the apartment complexes where participating students reside; eliminating transportation challenges (Prairie Norton Afterschool is located within the school building). 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 where students reside; visiting students in their homes frequently.
  • 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 in schools.
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, parent education workshops, community field trips and translation services.

Columbus State has operated afterschool programs for Immigrant and Refugee (I/R) students since 2004. The programs were initially operated through the College's Language Institute in response to the request of parents attending Basic English courses. The ESLAsC program was developed over several years in response to this request. The program has a long history of addressing the educational and cultural integration needs of Columbus' growing I/R population.

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. ESLAsC works with an outside evaluator to review internal survey instruments and data collection practices. The evaluator performs site observations, staff and stakeholders interviews, as well as preparation of interim and annual reports.