“Wraparound Services Alone Won’t Improve Student Outcomes.” is the title of a recent blog by Paul Hill Director of the Center for Reinventing Public Education. As leaders of the community schools movement we couldn’t agree more.
The community school is a classic vision of schools as centers of our communities. It is being remade for the 21st century to bridge the tensions between poverty and academics; we must tackle both, together. There are no silver bullets and we must do both-and that is what community schools do.
Through results-focused partnerships, community schools marshal the assets of a community — human, financial, and institutional — and align them with the school to support and enrich students’ learning and developmentmunity schools do focus on organizing health and social supports, but family and community engagement, and a robust curriculum with expanded learning opportunities during and beyond the school day are also part the equation. We advocate a curriculum that incorporates the real world in which children and youth live and challenges young people to address issues in their communities.
We don’t have the luxury anymore of “either-or” propositions between wraparound services or strong academics
To realize this vision, community schools are reorganizing existing community resources so they are aligned with the mission of public schools. The assets of health systems, cities and counties, higher education institutions, United Ways and community-based organizations are being aligned around the education of our childrenmunity schools are using existing space – the public’s schools — as the place to make this happen because schools are where the challenges students face emerge, where student learning must improve and where communities gather. Read more “Community Schools: Much More than Wrap Around Services”