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Newsletter 7-8

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Spotlight on Oakland Unified School District-A New Full-Service Community School District!

In July 2010, Oakland Superintendent Tony Smith joined the ranks of select superintendents that are beginning to use the full-service community school strategy district-wide. School and political leaders in Cincinnati, Evansville (IN), Ogden (UT), Tulsa and others have already declared that a district-wide community schools strategy is vital to their education reform agendas. Smith even changed the tagline for the Oakland Public Schools to "Community Schools, Thriving Students."

Smith received some national attention for this strategy in the New York Times this summer. Coalition staff spoke to Smith about his plans to make every school a community school, his collaboration with the school board, and how he expects community schools to transform communities in Oakland. Click here to read the full interview.

Coalition Update: Report to the Field

Full Service Community School Award Winners Announced!
The Coalition would like to congratulate the federal
Full Service Community Schools Program winners! Eleven grants were awarded to communities from Arizona, Delaware, California, Indiana, Massachusetts, New Jersey, South Carolina and Texas. Click here to read our press release.

21 Promise Neighborhood Award Winners Announced! The Promise Neighborhood planning grants will help communities coordinate a web of services to improve the educational and health outcomes of children and youth. Services range from early learning to college and career, health care, safety, as well as, boosting family engagement in student learning. At the center of every Promise Neighborhood is a community school. Click here to read the Coalition's press release!

Innovative Strategies for Community Schools The Center for American Progress (CAP) hosted an event on September 22, 2010 to highlight the community school strategy. The panel, which included Coalition Director, Martin Blank, Adeline Ray from Chicago Public Schools, and Doris Terry Williams, Executive Director of the Rural Schools and Community Trust, discussed ways to develop and grow community schools as a rural education strategy and through the use of expanded learning time. CAP released two new papers on these topics, which you can find in the Publications section below. Click here for the video of the event.

Martin Blank Invited to Participate in White House Convening on School Turn Around.
On September 20th, the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships, Department of Education and the Corporation for National and Community Service, convened leaders from national education, nonprofit, and faith groups to discuss how to strengthen partnerships between school districts, schools, and community-based organizations. The group identified promising strategies that community and interfaith service initiatives can use to help transform schools through academics, youth development, social and health supports, and family engagement.
Click here to read more.

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Research, Publications and Tools

Breaking the Mold- Community Schools & Expanded Learning Time Together Help Students Succeed
This report discusses how the community schools strategy, along with expanded learning time- can help close the achievement gap. Read the report here...

The Rural Solution- How Community Schools Can Reinvigorate Rural Education
This report examines the role of community schools in rural education. Many rural communities face a challenge in providing quality education to students. In rural locations with limited resources, community schools provide the greatest opportunity for quality education and success. Read the report here...
Yes We Can: The Schott 50 State Report on Public Education and Black Males 2010
A recent Schott Foundation report shows that despite state efforts to save black males, America's education systems still fails over half the nation's black male students. In 2007-2008 only 47 percent of black males graduated from high school. The report argues that in order for these youth to succeed, they must have access to opportunities to learn. Click here to read the report...

NCWD/Youth Releases Guide on Supporting Career Development of Youth with Learning Disabilities
The National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth released Charting the Course: Supporting the Career Development of Youth with Learning Disabilities. This Guide will help practitioners, administrators, and policymakers in secondary and postsecondary education programs, transition programs, One-Stop Career Centers, youth employment programs, and community rehabilitation programs to improve services and outcomes for youth, ages 14 to 25, with diagnosed and undiagnosed learning disabilities.
Access the guide and learn more by clicking here.

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Opportunities and Events

SAVE THE DATE: 2011 Seattle Community Schools Learning Laboratory co-hosted with the Community Schools Collaborative. March 30-April 1, 2011 in Seattle, Washington. Registration Coming Soon..

COMING SOON- Coalition for Community Schools, Request for Applications for the 2011 Community Schools National Awards for Excellence. For more information contact Maame Ameyaw at

CALL FOR ABSTRACTS: 2011 National Assembly on School-Based Health Care Convention, June 26-29, 2011 in Chicago, IL. This year's theme is School-based Health Care and the Community: A Partnership that Works. DEADLINE: October 29th.

Afterschool Alliance, Lights On Afterschool
On October 20th, more than 7,500 communities and 1 million Americans will celebrate Lights On Afterschool, a nationwide event organized by the Afterschool Alliance to rally support for afterschool programs. Click here to find out more about this event.
National Community Education Association's 45th Annual Conference, December 1-3, 2010.
December 1-3, 2010 - Phoenix, Arizona
Registration is now open! Click here!

Have an Event or Opportunity that you would like us to highlightω Email

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Vol. VII No. 8
October 2010


In This Issue

Policy Update: DIPLOMA Act

Rep. Chu Removes Barriers so Children Can Learn

On Wednesday, September 29, 2010, Representative Judy Chu, D-CA (32nd District), introduced theDeveloping Innovative Partnerships and Learning Opportunities that Motivate Achievement (DIPLOMA) Act. "The DIPLOMA Act helps communities address problems like poor nutrition and abuse – letting every child reach his or her full potential. By ensuring we meet the academic, emotional, and social needs of students in California and across the nation, we'll increase achievement and prepare the next generation of America's workforce," says Rep. Chu.

The DIPLOMA Act would authorize grants to states that would then be subgranted to local groups to develop services building services that strengthen student achievement. Services will include: tutoring, afterschool, service learning, extending learning services, health care and social support, among many others.

"Our communities have a major role to play in the education of our children, and the DIPLOMA Act affirms that role and responsibility," said Martin Blank, Director of the Coalition for Community Schools and President of the Institute for Educational Leadership. "DIPLOMA offers a clear partnership framework and incentives for schools and communities to work together to help students succeed. This legislation will bring to scale effective community schools strategies in diverse places including Los Angeles, Cincinnati, Tulsa, Kansas City, New York City, and Portland (OR)."

Click here to access full press release.

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About Us

The Coalition for Community Schools believes that strong communities require strong schools and strong schools require strong communities. We envision a future in which schools are centers of thriving communities where everyone belongs, works together, and succeeds.

The Coalition advances opportunities for the success of children, families and communities by promoting the development of more, and more effective, community schools.

Coalition for Community Schools is housed at the Institute for Educational Leadership


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