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Community engagement refers to partnerships shared between schools, families and their communities to support the social, emotional, and educational development of youth. School and community partnerships enrich and expand services for in and out of school time and as a result, positive outcomes for youth and their families.
Supports provided in partnership can produce:
- healthier students
- better academic outcomes
- numerous physical, social and emotional, and socio-economic benefits.
Several national organizations have proven effective at bringing communities and schools together.
- The Communities in Schools program, which is currently piloting a program in the Aurora School District in Colorado uses a school-based coordinator to bring community resources into schools to empower student success, remove barriers, and keep kids in school.
- The National Reading Partners program, which serves 10 schools in Denver, mobilizes communities to partner with schools and provides students who are struggling to read with one-on-one volunteer reading partners.
- Every Colorado school is required to have a tiered instructional framework – this is known as a Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) and an essential component of MTSS is school and community partnering.
Where can I learn more?
- 21st Century Community Learning Centers
- Promising Partnership Practices
- State Advisory Council for Parent Involvement in Education
- Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS)
- Center for Social Organization of Schools at Johns Hopkins University
- The Coalition for Community Schools
- Communities in Schools (Pilot program in Aurora)
- Mile High United Way Education Programs
- National Association for Family, School, and Community Engagement
- Reading Partners