Twenty Years, Ten Lessons

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In a 1902 speech to the National Education Association, John Dewey outlined a comprehensive approach to American schooling that encompassed adults as well as children, fostered holistic development and brought community resources into strong partnerships with schools. More than 100 years later, even in a challenging educational environment dominated by marked economic inequality and technical solutions (such as test-based accountability and privatization of public education), Dewey’s vision is being enacted across America through the community school strategy. As two of the leaders of this modern-day movement, we want to reflect here on recent progress in realizing Dewey’s vision of every school a community school, with a focus on how this strategy is being adapted to contemporary economic and societal conditions.

JANE QUINN and Martin J. Blank

Jane Quinn served as Director of the Children’s Aid National Center for Community Schools from January 2000 through June 2018. She is currently a doctoral student in urban education at the City University of New York. Martin Blank was the Founding Director of the Coalition for Community Schools. He also served as President of the Institute for Educational Leadership.

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