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Federal Funding

Currently places have been using various federal programs that serve children, youth, families, and communities to finance the community school strategy. However, these current federal sources aren’t effective and efficient, therefore, there are various pending bills and federal programs in the pipeline that can provide aligned funding for community schools.
 
The Coalition proposes that State Education Agencies (SEAs) use the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) Flexibility Waivers to include the community schools strategy as an intervention model for school improvement. States such as Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Oklahoma have used community schools both as a school improvement, as well as a family and community engagement strategy.
 
The following federal funding, across Departments of Education, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Justice and more, can be used in implementing a comprehensive community schools strategy:
 
 
COMMUNITY SCHOOLS INFRASTRUCTURE

Funding a Systemic Approach to Community Schools Strategy
  • Full Service Community Schools federal competitive grant provides grants to implement and expand full-service community schools. Grants go to a consortium consisting of an LEA and one or more community-based organizations, nonprofit organizations, or other public or private entities to provide comprehensive academic, social, and health services for students, students’ family members, and community members that will result in improved educational outcomes for children. Click here to review how previous grantees have used their funding to start and scale community schools.
  • Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education (ESEA) Act provides grants to local education agencies (LEAs) with high percentages of poor children. Title I can provide support for a variety of components of a community school model in a school operating a school wide program. Click here for more information on how specific sections of Title I can be used to fund community schools infrastructure, family and community engagement, engaged instruction, expanded learning opportunities, as well as results-drive support services.
  • 21st Century Community Learning Centers (Title IV of ESEA Act) are dedicated to out-of-school time programming to provide learning opportunities for academic enrichment, including program activities in the arts, music, recreation, drug and violence preven­tion, and youth development activities. It is a formula grant allocated to State Education Agencies (SEAs).
  • School Improvement Grants (Title I of ESEA Act) are awarded to the lowest-performing Title I schools. Community schools can use these funds to support a variety of programs and activities. The Coalition has provides an overview of school improvement grants in the context of the community schools strategy.
  • Promise Neighborhoods provides funds to improve educational and developmental oppor­tunities for children in neighborhoods with high poverty levels. Community schools are at the cen­ter of each Promise Neighborhood. Click here for more on the relationship between Promise Neighborhoods and Community Schools.
  • Race to the Top District Competition provides Local Education Agencies (LEAs) with the opportunity for local innovation. By focusing on a place-based, it prioritizes results, resource alignment and integrated services to support personalized and engaged student learning. Click here for an explanation of the competition in the context of the community schools strategy.
 
Coordination
  • The federal funding opportunities that support community school structures and systems, listed above, can be used to support coordination of community resources in schools.
  • Corporation for National and Community Service provides Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA), AmeriCorps, Senior Corps, and Experience Corps volunteers can coordinate community school activities and partnerships with community agencies.
 
Building Capacity for Rural Schools
ENGAGED INSTRUCTION AND EXPANDED LEARNING OPPORTUNITY

College and Career Ready
 
After School and Summer Programs
  • Title IV - 21st Century Community Learning Centers are dedicated to out-of-school time programming to provide learning opportunities for academic enrichment, including program activities in the arts, music, recreation, drug and violence preven­tion, and youth development activities. It is a formula grant allocated to State Education Agencies (SEAs).
  • Food and Nutrition Service for "After School Snacks": Many current 21st CCLC programs are eligible to receive funds through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service for "After-school Snacks," and in some cases to provide supper to young children. 
  • Summer Food Service Program provides families with snacks and meals that can contribute to the nutritional services provided in local programs.
HEALTH AND SOCIAL SERVICES
 
Improving Health for Students, Families and Communities
  • Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) funding flows from state to local or regional com­munity action agencies (CAAs or CAPs) serving low-income families. Partnerships with CAP agen­cies can help support community schools.
  • Community Based Long Term Services: The Affordable Care Act includes changes that enable states to target home and community-based services to particular groups of people, to services accessible to more individuals, and to ensure the quality of the services provided. This may offer potential resources for establishment of school-based health centers.
  • Healthy Tomorrows Partnership for Children Program (HTPCP): The purpose of HTPC is to increase the number of innovative community initiated programs that promote access to health care for children, youth and their families nationwide, and employ preventive health strategies.
  • Children’s Health Insurance Program: In some states, school-based or school-linked health centers are allowed to bill Medicaid/Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for reimbursement of medical services provided to eligible students.
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) through their Safe Schools/Healthy Students program offers initiatives to prevent violence and substance abuse among youth in schools and communities.
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is dedicated to protect the health and promote quality of life through the control and prevention of injuries, disease and disabilities.  
    • CDC provides competitive funding for state health and education departments so they can work together to help build the capacity of school districts to implement a coordinated approach to school health. All states and territories that meet certain criteria can apply for funding from CDC every 5 years.
    • CDC also provides competitive funding for national nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) to build the capacity of schools to address specified health-risk behaviors and conditions. All NGOs that meet certain criteria can apply for funding from CDC every 5 years.
  • Food and Nutrition Service for "After School Snacks": Many current 21st CCLC programs are eligible to receive funds through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service for "After-school Snacks," and in some cases to provide supper to young children. 
  • Summer Food Service Program provides families with snacks and meals that can contribute to the nutritional services provided in local programs.
 
Increasing Physical Education and Recreation Programs
 
Increasing Focus on Disconnected Youth
EARLY CHILDHOOD
 
Increasing Early Childhood Development Efforts
  • Head Start and Early Head Start fund competi­tive grants that provide comprehensive develop­ment services for low-income preschool children, infants and toddlers.
  • Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) funding may provide for comprehen­sive consumer education to parents and the public, increase parental choice, and improve quality and availability of child care. Grants can provide for after and before school programs.
  • Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge will focus on improving early learning and development programs for young children by designing and implementing an integrated system of high-quality early learning programs and services.
COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT: BUILDING A STRONG SCHOOL AND COMMUNITY ENVIRONMENT
 
School Environment

Student Centered Community Building
  • Promise Neighborhoods provides funds to improve educational and developmental oppor­tunities for children in neighborhoods with high poverty levels. Community schools are at the cen­ter of each Promise Neighborhood.
  • HOPE VI provides funds for physical and man­agement improvements in public housing and for community and support services.
  • Choice Neighborhoods emphasize local commu­nity planning for improving education, housing, services, transportation, and access to jobs.
  • Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) support economic and community development efforts at the local level. Examples of use of funds include improvement of the physical infrastructure of facilities or broader community improvement efforts, which may include youth development activities.
  • Youthbuild funds organizations to train youth to construct or rehabilitate affordable homes.
  • Safe Routes to School Program, from the U.S. Department of Transportation, states improve the ability of primary and middle school students to walk and bicycle to school safely.
  • Sustainable Housing and Communities by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, can be used to create strong, sustainable communities by connecting housing to jobs, fostering local innovation, and helping to build a clean energy economy. Schools can be used as the center of this strategy.
OTHER FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES
 
 
MORE INFORMATION ON USING FEDERAL FUNDING FOR COMMUNITY SCHOOLS
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