Community Schools National Forum 2016

In April 2016, the Coalition for Community Schools, together with the Albuquerque/Bernalillo (ABC) Community School Partnership, will convene diverse stakeholders dedicated to better results for young people across the nation.

Apr 06, 2016 12:00 AM to
Apr 08, 2016 12:00 AM
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Join Us at the 2016 National Forum
Our National Forum happens at a time when the challenges facing public education seem insurmountable. Over half of America’s schoolchildren are now poor, there is deepening concern about the future of children of color, and inequities in our society are more apparent than ever.

This year's theme, Rising Together – Learning across Family, School, and Community, makes explicit that only by working together and focusing on learning will all children thrive. It recognizes the rapid growth of community schools – schools with deep, results-focused relationships with community partners.

Improving learning in community schools means partnering in a number of different areas, including: health, social supports, and services; expanded learning opportunities; and family and community engagement. Participants may attend workshops that will address one of the following learning partnership strands:

1. HEALTH, SOCIAL SUPPORTS, AND SERVICES: Community schools offer a wide array of supports and services for students and families – from health and mental health to family supports, from feeding programs and substance abuse prevention to crisis intervention and counseling, and beyond.
2. EXPANDED LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES: Learning takes place both inside and outside of the typical school day, at home, and in the community. Community school partnerships leverage community partners to make learning engaging, motivating, community-based, challenging, and diverse. Areas of expanded learning of interest include:
A) Engaging Instruction
B) Out of School Time
C) Early Childhood Development

3. FAMILY & COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT: Youth spend much of their time at home and in the community. These are learning opportunities that community schools are able to leverage.
A) Family Engagement:
B) Community Engagement
C) Youth and Community Organizing

4. SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT PLANNING: Community schools require sophisticated planning efforts among educators, families, and community partners. At a time when school leaders often face multiple programs that argue they have the answer, school and community leaders need to align and integrate these resources into the school improvement plan.
D) Youth Development
E) College, Career, and Citizenship

5. RESULTS-FOCUSED PLANNING AND EVALUATION: Workshops will demonstrate how to use key results to drive community school planning and how to collect data that will convince policymakers to sustain and grow community schools.

6. LINKAGES WITH NEIGHBORHOOD AND COMMUNITY REVITALIZATION: Workshops will examine the use of school facilities as public places, and the role of community schools are playing as vehicles for neighborhood transformation and community revitalization.

7. COORDINATION AND PARTNERSHIP DEVELOPMENT: Successful community schools rely on a coordinator whose job is to identify the needs and assets of the school, families, and the community; to develop appropriate partnerships to support the schools; and to coordinate and align activities between educators and partners. At the systems level, intermediaries coordinate activities among partners, school districts, unions, schools, and others.

8. LEADERSHIP AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT: Workshops will explore how people in different roles are being prepared to lead and work in community schools including school district leaders, principals, teachers, community school coordinators, and community partners. We also want to hear stories about how strong leaders at community schools, and at the community levels in multiple institutions, are crossing boundaries and working together to enable community schools to succeed.

9. SUPPORTIVE POLICY AND ADVOCACY: Workshops will illustrate how community school leaders are advocating for policies that support the implementation of community schools at scale. Particularly focused on state level, and how local stakeholders are working to change policy within key institutions.

10. FINANCE AND RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT: Community schools often use a variety of funding streams to support their work. Coordinators and other leaders need to be creative in weaving these funding sources and finding ways to sustain the work. Workshops demonstrate how to start and sustain funding and the key roles of partners and leaders in funding.

11. COMMUNICATIONS: What are the messages that have helped you communicate about your work to a wide variety of stakeholders? Workshops may include how you have captured the attention of the media, organized a messaging campaign, planned a successful school site visit, and used social media.

12. SCALING SYSTEMS OF COMMUNITY SCHOOLS: Workshops will help participants learn strategies for organizing, scaling up, and sustaining multi-site community school initiatives.

More information about this event…