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Community School News

Activist to lead city's community school effort

Education activist Susan Gobreski will lead the city's charge in setting up community schools throughout Philadelphia, Mayor Kenney announced Wednesday. Gobreski will be asked to establish creative community partnerships within school buildings. "It's part of an approach to tackling poverty," said Gobreski. "It's the culmination of all the other policy- how do we give each child what they need?". She is the second education activist selected by Kenney to head one of his major policy initiatives. Read More >

Can Technology Help Community Schools Go To Scale?

Easier access to more and better data paint a more complete picture of students for the multiple partners and educators supporting them and their families at a community school. The technology tools that would allow smooth, secure information sharing at scale are an area of opportunity. Reuben Jacobson, Deputy Director of the Coalition for Community Schools, explains that the more established have started developing dashboards while new or disconnected schools are still using Excel spreadsheets. Read More >

Mayor Kenney Continues His Weekly School Visits As He Assembles Plan To Fund Community Schools

Mayor Jim Kenney visited service providers at a school in West Philadelphia Thursday morning, as he draws-up his plan to expand the “community school” concept. Kenney and Chief Education Officer Otis Hackney are still devising his plan to expand community schools in the district. On a tour of the Belmont Charter School he said, "I think all the professionals that work here free up the teachers to teach. And that’s what we’re looking to do in the public schools." Read More >

Community schools get a boost from City

The Panel for Educational Policy, a 13-member body of education experts and officials that is appointed by the Mayor of NYC, met to define the vision for NYC community schools. With 50 parents in attendance, the group came to a conclusion and voted successfully for NYC's new community schools policy. Read More >

Snake Oil (and vouchers) Don’t Work. Community Schools, Do!

Lily Eskelsen Garcia, president of the NEA, writes about how the issue of school choice is a detractor of many of the prevailing issues taking place many public schools. The issue leaves the schools and communities affected only further damaged. However, the community schools strategy not only serves the students in these affected schools, but their communities as well. Read More >

Lesniak: Attack poverty and improve education with community schools

The most significant cause of poverty in America is the failure of education of children from low income families. Across the nation we see examples of successful community schools providing high quality education that extends beyond the classroom. Embedding community schools as anchors to support the growth and development of neighborhoods will improve educational outcomes and move New Jersey away from being 49th in the measurement of its educational poverty gap. Read More >

Failing our kids, from Flint to Philly

The water poisoning in Flint, Michigan and school reform in Philadelphia are two crises affecting quality of life and future opportunity for young people. Both represent the hardships caused by equating money-saving with doing good work and both highlight the unequal distribution of available resources. Americans generally spare no expense on the health and welfare of children, but not in urban blue-collar communities like Flint. Luckily for Philly, school privatization is not irreversible. Read More >

Hoyer Visits Judy Center in St. Mary’s County

Congressman Steny H. Hoyer visited the Judy Center at George Washington Carver Elementary School in Lexington Park. He was joined by Steven Hicks, a Senior Policy Advisor in the Office of Early Learning at the U.S. Department of Education. They focused on the success of the full-service community school model used by “Judy Centers,” early childhood education centers named for his late wife. Hoyer’s efforts led to the inclusion of the full-service community school model in ESSA. Read More >

Every Student Succeeds Act an Opportunity to Step Up Together

Mary Kingston Roche reflects on her own teaching experience in Oakland to recognize opportunities within ESSA for states and districts to deeply engage the community so that all are working together to help young people thrive. She draws inspiration from recent progress in Oakland for transitions made possible by evaluating non-academic indicators, increased enrichment in instruction, relatively flexible funding for well-rounded education, and supporting educators to best help students succeed. Read More >

How A Great Teacher Cultivates Veggies (And Kids) In The Bronx — In 17 Photos

Stephen Ritz, one of NPR’s 50 great teachers, teaches science in the nation’s poorest congressional district, at Community School 55 in the South Bronx. Ritz promotes community gardening and affordable healthy eating by teaching cooking classes for both students and parents. His dedication is getting students excited about science but also creating a positive and beautiful environment for learning. Read More >

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