Now accepting applications for the Expanded Learning RFP – apply by April 27!

Best Starts is partnering with School’s Out Washington (SOWA) to strengthen and increase learning opportunities that provide high-quality programming for children and young people across King County.

SOWA is administering this funding opportunity and now accepting proposals! Learn more and download the RFP on SOWA’s Best Starts for Kids partnership web page.

Applications are due by April 27, 2022 at 11:59 pm.

About this opportunity

School’s Out Washington (SOWA), in partnership with Best Start for Kids, is seeking proposals from expanded learning providers to strengthen and increase expanded learning opportunities for King County young people ages 5-13 who are BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) and/or living in poverty.

Expanded learning opportunities provide high-quality programming through a range of activities including academic enrichment, cultural and social development activities, physical activity and health promotion, arts education, and leadership development. Expanded learning programs and organizations emphasize the importance of meeting young people where they are – physically, academically, socially, and emotionally – to help them build the relationships, competencies, and confidence they need to reach their full potential.

The Best Starts’ Expanded Learning strategy will continue to deepen our investments in the two program models from the first levy:

  1. BIPOC-Led Organizations
  2. Place-Based Collaboratives (PBCs) centered in school and housing communities.

Eligibility: This request is open to non-profit organizations, including religious organizations; community-based organizations; tribes and tribal organizations; and public or governmental agencies serving communities in King County. Small nonprofits, community-based organizations, and licensed school-age childcare providers are encouraged to submit proposals.

Applicants must meet one of these eligibility requirements:

  • A BIPOC-Led Organization that provides expanded learning opportunities for King County young people ages 5-13.
  • A Place-Based Collaborative (PBC) of at least three partner organizations in which a school or housing community is collaborative lead, non-lead partner, or champion. The PBC will collaboratively provide expanded learning opportunities for King County young people ages 5-13.

Visit SOWA’s Best Starts for Kids webpage for more information on the application process and to view the RFP.

Have any questions? Attend an information session

SOWA will offer four information sessions to provide an overview of RFP and application via Zoom. Potential applicants are encouraged to attend and visit SOWA’s Expanded Learning webpage for more information. You can register for an information session below.


Request for Proposal ReleasedMarch 10
Information Sessions3/17, 1:00 – 3:00 PM
3/25, 10:00 AM – noon
4/12, 2:00 – 4:00 PM
4/20, 10:00 AM – noon
Final day to submit questions for FAQApril 20
Proposals dueApril 27, 2022 at 11:59 pm
Proposals reviewed and scoredApril 28 – May
Notice of selected and not-selected proposalsJune
List of selected organizations publicizedJune
Project implementation beginsJuly

Would you like application support?

To support applicant organizations in partnership development and program planning, SOWA will partner with YDEKC (Youth Development Executives of King County) to provide optional training opportunities. More information is available on SOWA’s Expanded Learning webpage.

In addition, Best Starts technical assistance (TA) is available to applicants at no cost to support organizations navigate the application process.

Partnered consultants can support by: helping to determine appropriate fit between your work and this funding opportunity, providing guidance on how best to answer application questions, supporting your application development (including editing and reviewing), and supporting you in explaining your qualifications in the most clear and concise way. If you are interested in accessing Best Starts technical assistance, learn more here.

1. Check out our funding calendar here

This calendar shares upcoming funding opportunities staggered throughout the year. Subscribe to our blog and newsletter to the right of the calendar to receive notices whenever we post a new funding opportunity.

2. Watch our latest recorded info sessions

If you were unable to make it to the info session for an open funding opportunity, check out the recordings and slideshows here.

2. Join us at our second Virtual Open House

We are hosting a Virtual Open House on Wednesday, March 30 from 10 AM -5 PM! Similar to our first Virtual Open House, we plan to share information about upcoming funding opportunities and connect with community. Learn more about our 5 sessions and register here.

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