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Stage 6: Milestone 6

Stage 1 | Stage 2 | Stage 3 | Stage 4 | Stage 5 | Stage 6

MILESTONES:

COLLECT DATA TO ASSESS PROGRESS USE DATA TO STRENGTHEN THE INITIATIVE PUBLICIZE PROGRESS EXPAND ROLLOUT PREPARATION AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT SYSTEM SCAN
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STAGE 6: CONTINUE IMPROVEMENT AND EXPANSION
Milestone #6: System Scan


Sustaining a scaled-up system of community schools requires constant attention. Leaders should not take their eyes off key systemic challenges that can derail change efforts. Regular system scans across all four characteristics of effective scale-up—shared ownership, spread, depth, and sustainability—can help identify areas that need attention. The Community School System Benchmarks Chart (Appendix) lists expected areas of accomplishment as you build the collaborative leadership infrastructure. Here are some questions to get you started. After you answer each one, consider how you can strengthen each area.

Shared Ownership

  • Are the initiative’s vision and principles of community schools understood by all stakeholders at a deep level and used to inform funding, policy, and practice decisions?
  • Do key leaders demonstrate sustained participation and commitment?
  • Is shared ownership evident in the operation of the initiative’s Collaborative Leadership Framework as well as in its design?

Spread

  • Does the scale-up initiative increase the number of community schools vertically (throughout the educational pathway) and horizontally (across several schools and school districts)?
  • Do professional development and marketing activities ensure a flow of people steeped in the community schools strategy?

Depth

  • Doe the initiative empower students and their families to be their own agents of change?
  • Do professional development programs incorporate the vision and principles of community schools for educators, social workers, youth development staff, health and mental health providers, and everyone else working with children and youth?
  • Do we have appropriate data? Do we use the data effectively?
  • Do our data collection systems permit school-site personnel to track students on key indicators of success and allow policymakers to make informed policy and resource alignment decisions at the community level?

Sustainability

  • Does our strategy continuously engage new organizational and community leaders so that community schools remain a priority during leadership transitions?
  • Is a constituency for community schools evident and sufficient to leverage redirected funding for community schools?
  • How clearly do partner agencies’ policies foster collaborative work, resource sharing, and strategies to support agreed-upon results for children, schools, families, and communities?
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