Coalition for Community Schools - Because Every Child Deserves Every Chance

September Newsletter 2014


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Vol. XI Issue 6 September 2014

In this Issue

Upcoming Events

2SAVE THE DATE october 15-17Fundamentals 2

The Federation for Community Schools Forum (November 14)
With a special focus on the ways in which community schools mitigate the barriers to learning presented by systemic racial and socioeconomic inequalities, the Federation's 10th Annual Community Schools Forum, Harnessing the Power of Partnership to Promote Equity through Community Schools, will offer attendees the tools, strategies, research, and inspiration to enhance their community school efforts. Whether you're new and seek strategies to help lay a solid foundation upon which to build a quality community school or have been involved in this work for many years and seek ways to reinvigorate and deepen your work, this conference is for you! 

REGISTER TODAY!

If you are interested in posting a job or sharing an event, please reach out to Heather Naviasky.


 
 
 
 
 

Holyoke Community Schools: Strong Partners for Success in Early Literacy 

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Improving early childhood literacy is the goal that drives the work of the Holyoke Public Schools and its partners. Last school year, the Massachusetts district re-launched the Holyoke Early Literacy Initiative (HELI), a comprehensive strategy for increasing early reading proficiency rates and reducing the achievement gap. Early childhood literacy has been a long-term issue for Holyoke, with the district lagging significantly behind the state in literacy rates for many years.

Expansion of the community school strategy is at the heart of the early literacy strategy. Holyoke opened its first community school in 2009. Two more community schools then followed. In 2013 a new administration decided to adopt the community school strategy via HELI in order to address the early literacy crisis.

"We believe that in order to support every child in our schools, we must strengthen our relationships with families and community organizations. We also recognize that the gaps created due to language-deprived environments are predisposing our students to more academic and social emotional challenges in our schools. We believe that the full-service community school concept is a proven strategy to align resources and to bring accountability for the programming and services available for students." - Dr. Sergio Paez, Holyoke Superintendent of Schools.

Keep reading>

Choice Neighborhoods Promising Practice Guides 

University assisted community schools are making huge impacts in communities across the country - including in Seattle!

There, improving schools and the educational outcomes are a key driver in creating desirable neighborhoods.  Recognizing this, the Seattle Choice Neighborhoods grantees prioritized educational improvement in a high-needs neighborhood school by collaborating with multiple partners, including Seattle University, the school district and nonprofit organizations.  As a result, positive educational outcomes are emerging for students in Yesler’s local elementary school. 
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has put together a guide to highlight this work and will be sharing others stories that are putting these ideas into practice.  

News Spotlight!

Scaling Up Community Schools in NYC

The Children’s Aid Society recently released a thorough guide to help NYC stakeholders build a scaled up community school strategy. Mayor de Blasio has been an advocate for more community schools and has backed up his support with historic levels of resources to support 52 new community schools. Communities scaling up their initiatives will find the new NYC guide, along with other resources such as the Coalition’s Scaling Up School and Community Partnerships Guide, very useful.

News

Scaling Up Community Schools in NYC

The Children’s Aid Society recently released a thorough guide to help NYC stakeholders build a scaled up community school strategy. Mayor de Blasio has been an advocate for more community schools and has backed up his support with historic levels of resources to support 52 new community schools. Communities scaling up their initiatives will find the new NYC guide, along with other resources such as the Coalition’s Scaling Up School and Community Partnerships Guide, very useful. Read More >

BLOG - Bricks and Mortar: Community Schools as an Essential Facilities Strategy

School buildings communicate important messages to our children, their families, the community, and the educators and personnel that work there. A school's physical appearance speaks to people about the value our society places on education and on the role of the school in the community. Too often, our urban school facilities send the wrong messages. To learn more, check out this blog from IEL staff, Reuben Jacobson and Helen Janc Malone. Read More >

Webinar - Choice Neighborhoods: Placing School Improvements and Student Achievement at the Center of Neighborhood Revitalization

Coalition for Community Schools staff worked with the Center for the Study of Social Policy and HUD to prepare a technical assistance brief on the education component of the Seattle Choice neighborhoods. This work is an excellent example of how higher education institutions can work with schools and other partners like housing authorities to develop what the community schools movement calls university-assisted community schools. Please join us, September 24th 1 PM EDT for this webinar! Read More >

New Legislation Calls for Strong School-Community Partnerships to Strengthen Student Achievement

We are excited to announce that yesterday Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) introduced one of the Coalition’s key bills, the DIPLOMA Act. The bill would provide block grants to states to develop a framework for child and youth outcomes that take into account several factors beyond academics, and create the infrastructure to develop community schools. Please see our press release here and email Mary at rochem@iel.org if you would like to sign on your organization in support of the bill. Read More >

How to Get Kids to Class: To Keep Poor Students in School, Provide Social Services

Coalition partner, Dan Cardinali, President of Community in Schools, sheds light how community schools are combatting chronic absenteeism and many social issues, including mental health and housing. Lifting up the story of one student, Cardinali shares facts on how integrating services in the school through a coordinator can not only change the trajectory of a struggling student, but that it can be done in an effective and affordable way. Read More >

Foundation OKs $3 Million in Grants for Hartford Education Programming

The Hartford Foundation for Public Giving strikes again, approving grants totaling nearly $3 million to support education programming in the city. “More than $2 million will go to six community schools and $650,000 will go to five neighborhood-based Brighter Futures Family Centers.” “This reflects our view that children's success depends on the development of the whole child," said Cyrus Driver, vice president for strategy at the foundation. Read More >

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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. The Coalition for Community Schools is housed at the Institute for Educational Leadership in Washington, D.C.

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