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Capacity Building

In the simplest terms, capacity refers to the ability to deliver results. In states and communities across the country, policymakers are developing a vital capacity to organize and leverage resources to achieve shared goals on behalf of their clients—students, families and communities. From tiny Tukwila, Washington to sprawling Chicago, Illinois, community schools are bringing together public and private resources to meet the needs of the whole child. Through partnerships, hundreds of community schools are aligning and integrating strategies to support students, strengthen schools, engage families and help build entire communities where learning can happen. Many more places are using components of the community school strategy, but lack the structural and functional capacities to fully implement a vision where resources are coordinated for student success.

The Coalition for Community Schools offers Building Capacity for Community Schools, a series of monographs designed for Coalition members and a wide audience of stakeholders at the state and local level. Its purpose is to encourage and support building systems of community schools by distilling key lessons and recommending actions based on successful practice.

Capacity Series Reports & Guides:

This report builds on both practice and research to describe the what, why, and how of system-wide expansion of community schools. The guide is written for a wide audience and for communities at different points in planning for, implementing, and sustaining a community schools strategy.

The findings in this document represent some of the evidence about how a diverse set of community school initiatives (each with their own name) are preparing students to learn, helping them succeed, and preparing them for future success.

The paper explores the relationship between various place-based strategies and the potential associated with the alignment of these strategies operating within the same geographic areas. The paper demonstrates that community schools offer a powerful vision and strategy for what schools should look like within broader place based initiatives and how community schools can benefit from alignment with other efforts.

This 'how to' toolksit will provide multiple resources for planning, launching, and sustaining community schools.
This evaluation toolkit provides multiple resources, including a matrix that determines the stages of development of a community school, sample data collection strategies, plans, and agreements, as well as case studies of successful evaluation.

For more Coalition publications and resources, click here.

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