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Early Childhood & Community Schools Linkages Project Rationale

Current research and policy initiatives confirm that coordinating high quality programming and policy support from early childhood through the elementary grades offers a direct pathway to school improvement.

Community schools promote a life-long learning continuum that begins well before the grades and continues long past graduation. Community school partners explicitly state that the development of the whole child is a critical factor for student success. Children do better when their families do better. In order to achieve the result that children enter school healthy and ready to learn, community schools provide services and supports the span the generations. They intentionally seek out family members; work to provide welcoming, single site sources of services, learning and recreation; and engage them as shared decision-makers.

Many community school initiatives already provide – or are connected to a range of early childhood programming including Head Start, day care, infant and well baby clinics, family support groups, intergenerational and pre-literacy programs. All of these help create relationships with young families and create a culture of involvement in their child’s learning throughout the grades.

Return to Main Early Childhood and Community Schools Linkages page.


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