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Community School News

Character and "Grit": The Heart of the Matter

"This collection of short videos, assembled by What Kids Can Do (WKCD), shines a light on how character and grit contribute to student success. Experts in the field share their research and experiences. Discussion questions follow each video." Read More >

Goodfellows: Communities in Schools Surrounding Students with Support

Partner organization, Communities in Schools is lifted up in this piece by the Lubbock Avalanche Journal. Looking to Monterey High School, the article focuses in on the Coordinator, Jessica Ortiz-Martinez, and her ability to not only address the multiple needs of the students, but also her ability to create a safe space for students. They feel like they have someone they can trust who is ready to help. Read More >

Commentary: Providing Social Services Through Schools is Fiscally Prudent

Taking another look at New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s School Renewal Program to convert the District’s lowest performing schools into Community Schools, author Tom Egan, discusses both sides of the debate. Where does Egan end up? He summarizes, “Taking into account this wide spectrum of benefits, people can responsibly conclude that a program such as Mayor de Blasio's is fiscally and socially prudent, a worthy investment for a city and its schools.” Read More >

Lessons on Full Service Community School Sustainability from Elev8 Oakland Policy Brief

This brief looks at how Oakland is sustaining the core pillars of its Elev8 community schools initiative. The brief identifies key challenges and opportunities with sustaining the core components of community schools, specifically: 1) coordination of services; 2) academic supports; 3) school based health centers; 4) family support services; and 5) family engagement and advocacy. One of the key lessons in sustainability is the need for an accountability driver for each major component. Read More >

Salt Lake City - $5 Million Grant to Further Reach of United Way's Community School Initiative

“This investment will truly change the trajectory for hundreds, if not thousands of low-income, at-risk children,” said Deborah Bayle, president and CEO of United Way of Salt Lake. The Denver-based Daniels Fund awarded a $5 million grant, for five years, to the United Way of Salt Lake. The money will be used to support improving student outcomes and for the expansion of community schools. Read More >

Pittsburgh Public Schools Board Re-Elects Sumpter as President

After re-electing Thomas Sumpter as the President of the Pittsburgh Public Schools board, the board heard a presentation suggesting community schools as an option for Pittsburgh school improvement. Rachel Canning, internal and community organizing director for the Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers educated the board on undeniable benefits of school and community partnership. Read More >

Chronic Absenteeism, Poverty and How Community Schools Can Help

Nicole Mader, Education Policy Analyst at the Center for NYC Affairs at the New School, highlights the new report: Building a Better Picture of Poverty: What Chronic Absenteeism and Risk Load Reveal About NYC's Lowest-Income Elementary Schools. She explains, “For new and developing community schools, turning the dial down on chronic absenteeism can be a proving ground for more systemic, community-level change… [it] is building the essential foundation needed to achieve more far-reaching goals." Read More >

Oklahoma City District’s First Community School is a Big Hit with Parents

“I think parents see a difference in the education their kids are getting…I think they see support for their families. They’re not an island, they’re part of a village.” said Kelly Pearson, a parent, former teacher and leader in bringing the Community School model to Oklahoma City. Pearson’s remarks are one of a chorus of pleased parents after the successful implementation of Oklahoma City’s David R. Lopez Community School, the first of its kind in the area. Read More >

Expanding Program Links Students to Social Services

This Chalkbeat article follows the story of Marianna Merritt the site coordinator at Warner Elementary school in East Nashville, TN, as well as the students she serves. Like many community schools, Warner serves students of diverse backgrounds, each struggling with different challenges to their educational success. While giving an overview of many arguments for and against community schools, this article highlights the successes not only at Warner Elementary, but across the movement itself. Read More >

Re-connecting Youth to Opportunity: ED Announces the Performance Partnership Pilots Program

Community Schools are already creatively crossing systems to create new opportunities for our most disconnected youth to achieve better outcomes. With this work in mind, we encourage you to apply to become a Performance Partnership Pilot (P3) to test innovative, outcome-focused strategies for achieving significant improvements in educational, employment, and other key outcomes for disconnected youth. Read More >

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