The Extension Services-237 Report: Everything You Need to Know1

Ben Knowles and Tracy A. Tesdall 2

Overview of the ES-237 Report

What is the ES-237 report?

The Extension Services-237 (ES-237) is a report of the Cooperative Extension Service that consists of enrollment statistics for youth ages 5–18 participating in Extension youth programs and the volunteers providing service to these programs. Family Nutrition Programs (FNP) are the only youth Extension programs that are exempt from ES-237 reporting. In Florida, an annual ES-237 report is completed by each UF/IFAS county Extension office. County reports are submitted to Florida 4-H state headquarters where they are compiled into a single state report and submitted to the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) at the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Why is the ES-237 report important?

Cooperative Extension is part of the USDA. Partial funding for Extension youth programs is received through the USDA. To receive this funding, each county and state must report each year on the race, gender, grade, and residence of each participant in these programs.

4HOnline and the ES-237 report

Florida Agents and staff use 4HOnline (, a web-based enrollment system, to complete individual county ES-237 reports. 4HOnline is designed so that the ES-237 data automatically populates in each county's report as member, volunteer, and group enrollments are entered. Although 4HOnline does all the sorting and calculating, it is important for county agents and staff to be familiar with the different sections of the ES-237 and how to enter enrollments accurately. State Extension specialists conducting youth programs should contact the state 4-H information management coordinator for access to 4HOnline ES-237 reporting.

How do I access my county ES-237 report?

Log into 4HOnline as the county manager. Click on the Enrollment tab and then click on the Reports button. Click on Standard. Make sure the year is set to the current 4-H year. Right click on ES-237 (All Reports) and click Export to a PDF. This will download your report.

Ways to use the ES-237 report

The ES-237 report is not just a report. It is also a tool that can be used to compare multiple years of enrollment statistics to easily identify increases or decreases in membership, volunteer retention percentages, project enrollment numbers and other trends in participation. It is an important document in evaluating the participation and interests of a county's youth development program; particularly for your 4-H advisory and expansion and review committees.

ES-237 Section 1: 4-H Delivery Modes

Florida Agents use a variety of methods and locations for reaching youth ages 5–18 with opportunities that help them grow and develop in positive ways. Table 1 lists the delivery modes reported to the ES-237 report and how youth participation is reported for each delivery mode in 4HOnline, either through an "individual youth enrollment" or a "group enrollment." For example, youth participating in organized 4-H clubs can only be reported through individual youth enrollments, and youth participating in camps can only be reported through group enrollments.

The Extension program must provide the youth with six or more hours of educational programming to be included in the ES-237 report. A youth is reported to one of the delivery modes listed in Table 1 when he or she participates in a program provided as a result of action by Extension personnel (professional, paraprofessional, and/or volunteer). Notice that the delivery mode section of the ES-237 report counts youth only. Also, a youth can be counted more than once in this section. For example, a 4-H youth can be counted in a club delivery mode for his or her yearlong participation in a 4-H community club. This same youth can also be reported to the overnight camping delivery mode when he or she attends a 4-H residential camp. When a youth participates in a second program during the same program year, he or she is considered a duplicate.

Table 2 provides a description of the different ES-237 delivery modes. These are the national definitions and should be used to report youth participation on the ES-237 report.

What if a youth participates in an Extension program that is less than six hours?

Norman and Jordan (2012) define a youth participating in an Extension program of less than six hours as a "youth contact." Youth contacts can include programs conducted through 1862 and 1890 land-grant universities such as garden tours, field trips, career seminars, and similar short-term experiences. Since these programs are less than six hours long, they would not be included in the annual ES-237 report. However, agents can count these clientele contacts in their Reports of Accomplishments (ROA) workload data and/or in stakeholder reports. See Reporting Clientele Contacts in Workload ( for more information about clientele contacts.

ES-237 Sections 2 and 3: School Grade, Gender, Place of Residence, Ethnicity, and Race

When reporting youth to a delivery mode, whether through a member enrollment or group enrollment, 4HOnline asks for school grade, gender, place of residence, race, and ethnicity for each youth. Duplicates are not included in these sections of the ES-237 report. For example, using the earlier example of the club member who attends overnight camp, this youth is counted in both delivery modes, but is only counted once in the grade, gender, place of residence, race, and ethnicity sections of the ES-237. Since the youth is a club member, information is pulled from his or her member enrollment profile and added to these sections of the ES-237 report. When reporting this youth to the camp group enrollment, he or she would be counted as a duplicate. Keeping an accurate count of duplicate participants is beneficial to the agent, because it provides accurate information about the demographics of youth reached in the county. Tables 3, 4, and 5 provide more information about place of residence, ethnicity and race definitions.

ES-237 Section 4: Volunteers

The ES-237 report defines a volunteer as an adult or youth who provides unpaid support for youth Extension programs. The only volunteer-related information reported to the ES-237 is the number of youth volunteers and the number of adult volunteers that provided unpaid support for youth Extension programs in the current program year. There are two ways volunteers are reported to the ES-237 by 4HOnline. The first is through individual volunteer member profiles. If a youth or adult has an active member profile and has selected that he or she is a volunteer, 4HOnline counts them, automatically, to the ES-237 volunteer count. The second way to report volunteers is through a group enrollment. Only volunteers who do not have individual profiles in 4HOnline should be reported through a group enrollment. Also, a volunteer should not be counted on more than one group enrollment in the same program year. There is no way to remove duplicate/repeat volunteers on a group enrollment.

ES-237 Section 5: Projects

Projects are the planned sequence of age-appropriate and research-based learning opportunities youth experience when participating in one or more of the ES-237 delivery modes. Florida 4-H offers a wide array of projects. When enrolling a youth member, at least one project must be assigned to his or her profile. Multiple projects can be added to a youth profile. Once the youth enrollment is made active in 4HOnline, the youth's project is added to the overall project count. Projects can also be reported through group enrollments. The same youth may report multiple projects.

ES-237 Reporting Timeline

Annual county ES-237 reports for the ending 4-H year are due August 15. The Florida 4-H year is September 1 to August 31. If a county has a youth program occurring between August 15 and August 31, the county 4-H Agent should contact the state 4-H information management coordinator before August 15 for reporting instructions.

Further Information

Contact Florida 4-H state headquarters for further information about the ES-237 report and/or the 4HOnline enrollment system.


Kahler, J. (2013). Instructions for completing the state 4-H enrollment report. Washington D.C: NIFA National 4-H Headquarters

Norman, M. N., and Jordan, J. (2012). Understanding 4-H youth development delivery. Retrieved from


Table 1. 

Delivery Modes for 4-H Youth Programs

Delivery Modes

Individual Youth Enrollment*

Group Enrollment

Organized 4-H Clubs

(Community, In-School, After-School or Military)



Special Interest/Short Term Programs



Overnight and Day Camping Programs



School Enrichment Programs



Individual Study/Mentoring/Family Learning Program



After-School Programs (non-club, mid-, long term)



Instructional TV/Video/Web Programs



*There are two types of youth enrollments/profiles in 4HOnline, member and short-term member. Members must have a club and a project assigned to their enrollments/profiles. The delivery mode assigned to the club is the delivery mode assigned to the member and reported to the ES-237. Short-term member enrollments/profiles are not assigned a club (or delivery mode) and are not automatically reported to the ES-237 by 4HOnline. Short-term member enrollments/profiles are typically used to comply with the UF/IFAS Youth Protection Policy ( Use the example of a youth who only attends one week of residential 4-H camp during the program year. For reporting to the ES-237 overnight camping delivery mode, the youth has to be reported to a group enrollment to get counted. However, since the youth protection policy requires personal information (name, age, contact information, parent information, etc.) to be entered into 4HOnline for programs such as camps, the same youth must have a short-term member enrollment/profile. If this youth were assigned a member enrollment/profile and reported to a camp group enrollment, it would result in an inaccurate increase in delivery mode and/or project numbers on the ES-237.

Table 2. 

4-H Youth Delivery Mode Definitions

Delivery Mode


Organized 4-H Community Clubs

Club members meet as a group on a regular schedule under the direction of an adult volunteer with a planned program. Clubs typically have elected officers and a set of rules approved by membership to govern the club, or for very young groups, other developmentally appropriate structures and operating processes. Community clubs typically meet in the evenings or on weekends and offer self-chosen multiple learning experiences and activities.

Organized 4-H In-School Clubs

Club members meet as a group on a regular schedule under the direction of an adult volunteer with a planned program. In-school clubs meet during school hours and have officers and planned activities beyond school enrichment.

Organized 4-H Afterschool Clubs

Club members meet as a group on a regular schedule under the direction of an adult volunteer with a planned program. 4-H after-school clubs are organized within after-school programs administered by cooperative Extension staff or other organizations (i.e. other youth development organizations, housing authorities, faith-based groups). They set the above definition of a 4-H Club and the young people and adult staff identify themselves as 4-H members and volunteers. They may have officers and elements of a club structure.

Military 4-H Club

Club members meet as a group on a regular schedule under the direction of an adult volunteer with a planned program. Military 4-H clubs are organized by the armed forces, often on military installations, and are principally for military dependents.

Special Interest or Short-Term Program

Special interest and short-term programs include groups of youth meeting for a special learning experience that involves direct teaching by Extension staff or trained volunteers, including teachers. Programs are not part of the school curriculum and not restricted to members of 4-H clubs. The direct audience contact hours should be at least six for enrollment to be reported.

Overnight Camping Programs

Youth taking part in an Extension-planned educational experience of group living in the out-of-doors. Overnight camping includes being away from home at least one night (resident, primitive, or travel camping). Programs include an environmental or outdoor education component.

Day Camping Programs

Day camping consists of multiple-day programs in the out-of-doors with youth returning home each evening. Programs include an environmental or outdoor education component.

School Enrichment

School-aged youth receive a well-planned sequence of learning experiences during regular school hours.

Individual Study

Independent members must have a 4-H agent-approved plan of work for the 4-H year and meet with a mentor a minimum of 4 times during the program year. Progress toward goals should be submitted to the 4-H office. Counties may elect to allow youth to continue independent membership based on completed work or extenuating circumstances.

Afterschool Programs Using 4-H Curricula/Staff Training (School-age care)

After-school educational programs are offered to youth outside of school hours, usually in a school or other community center. The after-school program must be supported by Extension by training the after-school staff, infusing 4-H curricula into the program, and/or other significant support such as conducting needs assessment, evaluations, and/or resource development. The primary purpose of the program is to provide care, developmental and educational experiences for children and youth while parents are working or unavailable.

Instructional TV/Video/Web Programs

Extension-produced learning experiences offered to youth via broadcast or closed circuit television, including satellite transmission, or videotape replays of such series. May also include instruction delivered by internet.

Table 3. 

Place of Residence Definitions

Place of Residence



Participants who live in rural territory from which $1,000 or more of agricultural products were sold or would have been sold in the reporting year.

Towns of under 10,000 & rural non-farm

Participants who live in towns of under 10,000 population in rural, non-farm and open country situations not reported as farm

Towns and cities (10,000–50,000) & their suburbs

Participants who live within the immediate built-up areas surrounding such towns and cities, even though they might live beyond the immediate city limits.

Suburbs of cities of over 50,000

Participants who live in the urbanized and contiguous suburbs and towns surrounding a city of over 50,000

Central cities of over 50,000

Participants who live within the boundaries of metropolitan cities of over 50,000 population.

Table 4. 

Ethnicity Definitions




A person of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Central or South American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race.


All others

Table 5. 

Race Definitions




A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, North Africa, or the Middle East.

Black or African American

A person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa.

American Indian or Alaskan Native

A person having origins in any of the original peoples of North, Central, and South America, and who maintains tribal affiliation or community attachment.


A person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, of the Indian Subcontinent, including, for example, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippine Islands, Thailand, and Vietnam.

Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander:

A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, Micronesia, the Northern Marianas, or other Pacific islands.


1. This document is 4H345, one of a series of the 4-H Youth Development Program, UF/IFAS Extension. Original publication date October 2014. Revised August 2016. Reviewed October 2019. Visit the EDIS website at for the currently supported version of this publication.
2. Ben Knowles, state 4-H information management coordinator; and Tracy A. Tesdall, south district regional specialized 4-H agent, 4-H Youth Development Program; UF/IFAS Extension, Gainesville, FL 32611.

Publication #4H345

Date: 2019-10-24
Knowles, Ben
4-H Youth Development

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