Coalition for Community Schools - Because Every Child Deserves Every Chance

Newsletter 5.14

Community Schools Online

Coordination and Engagement- The Essential Ingredients?

August 8, 2008 Vol. V, No. 14

In This Issue

 

Coalition Update: Report to the Field
News from Capital Hill: Arne Duncan, Chief Executive Officer of the Chicago Public Schools, speaks about Community Schools
Randi Weingarten Weighs in on the Debate Between Finn and Ravitch
Call for Community Schools Research
What’s going on in your Community Schools?

In the News
Volunteer for Your School and Your Community’s Future
Engaged Citizens Make a Difference
Mott Afterschool Programming Promotes a New Day for Learning
We Need to Look Beyond the School Day
ED Launches Pilot Project in Hopes to Coordinate Funding
Chicago Parents Take Charge


Research, Publications, and Tools
National Initiative: New Directions for Student Support
America's Children in Brief: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2008
Study Calls for Increasing Learning Time

Events and Opportunities
PEN 2008 Annual Conference
Coalition Allies and Partners Grant Tracking Systems
Director of Hartford Community Schools, CT
Program Director position, Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL)

 

Coalition Update: Report to the Field


News from Capital Hill: Arne Duncan, Chief Executive Officer of the Chicago Public Schools, speaks about Community Schools
Watch this video of Arne Duncan, testifying at a hearing on Capital Hill. In response to a question around how to increase parent involvement, he references community schools. He notes that parents always want something better for their children.

 

Randi Weingarten Weighs in on the Debate Between Chester Finn and Diane Ravitch
In the past few weeks, since Randi voiced public support for community schools, the debate has been taking over the education blogosphere. Two bloggers of note have been Chester Finn and Dianne Ravitch. Just last week Randi commented on both of their perspectives. Check out her response here.

 

Call for Community Schools Research
We plan to issue a research synthesis in the Fall of 2008, so we are ready for a new Congress and a new President.   Please share local evaluation data you have with us. Please email them to Reuben Jacobson (jacobsonr@iel.org), our research fellow.

 

What’s going on in your Community Schools?
Are your community schools in the news? The Coalition wants to know. Please forward any clips, web links, photographs, and/or other supporting materials to us. This will help improve our website and help us to make our case in the new Congress. Please forward materials to Shital C. Shah, shahs@iel.org.


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In the News


Time to Volunteer for Your School and Your Community’s Future
In order to strengthen their schools, a Minnesota-based group has established the Cook Steering Committee. They have garnered support from the Board of Education, the local teachers union, and local faith based organizations. They see community engagement in their public schools as integral to improving schools and outcomes for children. Their efforts rise from the belief that it is “vital that the whole community become engaged in making public education work well.” Mr. Dale, the author of this article recognizes that many Americans really do love public schools and want our students and schools to become their best. Click here to read more…

Engaged Citizens Make a Difference
The Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence, in Kentucky, is celebrating 25 years of citizen engagement. They deeply believe that citizen engagement will create world class schools. The Committee, which includes business leaders, parents, and other community members, was formed in reaction to Kentucky’s failing education system in the 1980’s. As a result of their community engagement efforts over the past 25 years, Kentucky state tests of student achievement are up for every student in every subject and college enrollment has increased. Click here to read the full article.

 

Charles Steward Mott Foundation After School Programming Promotes a New Day for Learning
View how the Mott Foundation is working with communities to transform educational experiences for children and families with their program “A New Day for Learning”. Also, listen to an audio Q&A with Mott program staff An-Me Chung and Eugene Hillsman which explores Mott’s after school program. They discuss its history, current focus and the challenges ahead. Chung and Hillsman also stress the importance of adequate funding for after school and that skill acquisition is a necessity for our youth to succeed in a global economy.


We Need to Look Beyond the School Day
In response to the dismally wide achievement gaps in the Bay Area, Peter Fortenbaugh, the Executive Director of the Boys and Girls Club of the Peninsula, argues that partnerships with local nonprofit organizations can help narrow this gap. Read more about the types of partnerships suggested by Mr. Fortenbaugh.

 

ED Launches Pilot Project which Calls for Coordination of Resources
The world of after school is about to get a $5 million pool of funding for a pilot project which calls for the coordination of Supplemental Educational Services (SES) with 21 st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC). The goal of the pilot is to encourage partnerships between SES programs and the 21 st CCLC to increase the student achievement of low-income students. Under the High-Quality SES and After School Partnership Demonstration grant program, current 21 st CCLC can apply for this pilot project, in partnership with “one or more State-approved SES providers.” Read the complete article here.

 

Chicago Parents Take Charge
In an effort to address the dearth of parent engagement in secondary schools, Chicago public school parent coordinators from the Gaines Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs have developed a training model for parent engagement. This is in response to a trend that after 8 th grade, the rate of parent engagement drops. In this training model parents receive focused needs assessments and trainings. The trainings range in topics from the college application process to general education classes for themselves. The goal of the model is to keep the parents engaged so the children can have improved outcomes. Click here to read more…

 

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Research, Publications and Tools


National Initiative: New Directions for Student Support
A report published by The Center for Mental Health in Schools out of UCLA, provides both a general conceptual overview and a snapshot of practice considerations in addressing barriers to learning and teaching. It also addresses concerns about why it is essential to fundamentally and systemically transform how schools address these barriers by working with families and communities. Click here to read more…You can also provide feedback on the report.

 

Study Calls for Increasing Learning Time
Upon concluding a study of 300 Expanded Learning Time (ELT) initiatives, the Center for American Progress is recommending that high-poverty schools nationwide undertake a 30 percent increase in learning time — about two hours per day or 360 hours per year — in order to bolster student achievement. Click here to read more…In line with this recommendation, Senator Kennedy introduced the Time for Innovation Matters in Education Act for extended learning time, S. 3431 last week. It calls for extending the school year according to the Center’s recommendation, but allows districts the flexibility to meet the goal through extending the school year, week and/or day. With this extra time, students would receive both academic help, as well as be exposed to an array of extra-curricular activities to enhance their learning. It is during this additional time that school and community partnerships become integral in improving student outcomes.

 

America 's Children in Brief: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2008
The 2008 edition of "America's Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being," compiled by the 22-member Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics, presents indicators in seven sections: family and social environment, economic circumstances, health care, physical environment and safety, behavior, education, and health.  This range of indicators stresses the importance of partnerships that schools must establish across these sectors in order to improve all of these student outcomes. Click here for more details.

 

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Events and Opportunities


PEN 2008 Annual Conference
The conference will take place from November 16-18, 2008, at the Intercontinental Mark Hopkins Hotel, in San Francisco. The conference, which will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the founding of the first local education funds, will focus on the education imperative of extending the reach of high quality learning. Click here to register.



Coalition Allies and Partners Grant Tracking Systems
For up-to-date funding opportunities, please bookmark our partners’ websites and/or sign up for their newsletters:



Director of Hartford Community Schools
The newly created position of Director of Hartford Community Schools works in close collaboration with the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, Hartford System of Schools, the Hartford Office for Youth Services, and the Hartford School-Community Partnership to support the planning, development and operation of high-quality community schools in Hartford. Click here for the complete job description.

 

Program Director position, Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL)
The CASEL Program Director will be a senior-level, inspirational, and visionary manager responsible for the development and oversight of CASEL’s Program Department, which is charged with guiding districts, states and countries to systematically and broadly implement and sustain evidence-based SEL programming. Click here for more details. DEADLINE: August 25, 2008.

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Additional Information
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