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Portland Community School Praised at GradNation Summit

03/28/12

Need more proof that the community schools are becoming an effective and high-profile education reform vehicle? Look no further than the shoutouts and praise about Roosevelt High School, a SUN Community School in Portland at the 2012 GradNation earlier this month.
 
The GradNation forum is held annually by America’s Promise Alliance, a partnership organization that works to fulfill five promises to all children: caring adults, safe places,aA healthy start, an effective education, and opportunities to help others.  GradNation included nearly 1,000 education leaders from around the country. One featured speaker was U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, a supporter of community schools, who highlighted Roosevelt High School as an effective example of federal School Improvement Grants to boost graduation rates, attendance, and test scores. Duncan was a part of a panel discussion that included Portland Public Schools Superintendent Carole Smith.
 
Smith talks at length about the impactful programs at Roosevelt:
"We have SUN Community Schools that are present at Roosevelt campus, that are wrapping family engagement and wraparound support. We’ve got a family engagement coordinator who is organizing, with the culturally specific community-based organizations, family nights that are really engaging families with the school. We’ve got a church that has wrapped hugely around the school and its buildings an energy. On the campus that it’s spent a lot of different kind of activities, but there are mechanisms for individuals to support the school. And the alumni association has been hugely engaged, and as businesses, in supporting Roosevelt. And the university has engaged individual students with our students; now those relationships carry on what the students go on to college,"

Roosevelt High School is a part of the successful SUN Community School initiative in Multnomah County, Oregon which encompasses Portland. You can read more about SUN in this recent Education Week article.
 
We encourage you to watch the entire video from the March 19 Morning General Session that featured Duncan and Smith.
 
However, each video session is over 2 hours long so we have provided a transcript of the Duncan and Smith panel.
 


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