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Community Schools Initiative Awards


Initiative Winners

Community Learning Centers (Cincinnati, OH)

three young children and their teacher
Led by Cincinnati Public Schools with support from the Greater Cincinnati United Way, the Greater Cincinnati Community Foundation, the Health Foundation of Cincinnati, the Schiff Family Foundation, the Cincinnati Federation of Teachers, and the Community Learning Centers Institute, the initiative brings together hundreds of community partners to support students and teachers. There are now 35 Community Learning Centers (community schools) in the school district and a school board policy has directed the district to work on making all schools Community Learning Centers.  The Initiative is credited with helping Cincinnati Public Schools become the highest-rated urban school district in Ohio. Schools feature an array of opportunities including state of the art health and vision clinics, mental health support, business-mentoring partnerships and after school programs among other services.  The Centers have helped to reverse the long-time downward trend in district enrollment as more families move back in to the city to attend Cincinnati’s Community Learning Centers. Since the implementation of the community school strategy in 2001, voters have demonstrated their commitment to the schools by overwhelmingly passing all school levies.

Read the Cincinnati Community Learning Centers' Award Profile.
Watch the video of Cincinnati receiving its national award! (16:45)
View video to learn more about Cincinnati Community Learning Centers. (6:24)

Hartford Community Schools (Hartford, CT)

A partnership between the Hartford Public Schools, the City of Hartford, the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, and the United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut Hartford has now organized seven community schools with plans to add more. Each school partners with a lead community-based agency that works to involve families and other partners. Studentsparticipating in after-school programming at the school district’s seven community schools saw an increase in math, reading and writing scores between 2009 and 2010. Hartford Community Schools increased their state test scores by 5.6 points from 2009 to 2010. This represented twice the district's average increase over the same time period, and 15% growth since 2008 – all in one of the poorest major metropolitan cities in the country. Additionally, unprecedented collaboration between the school district, City Hall, and private and philanthropic organizations has expanded the reach and scope of the initiative. There has been an increase in partnerships since the implementation of community schools, with partners such as the Hartford Symphony and the Hartford Public Library. Funding from local foundations and partnering community organizations covered nearly 50% of school-based costs at Hartford’s community schools.

Read Hartford Community School's Award Profile.
Watch the video of Hartford receiving its national award! (18:00)

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