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Knowledge From the Field

Closing the Achievement Gap: Creating Quality Choices: School, Family, Community Connections

Published: January 2008

Publisher(s): Annie E. Casey Foundation

Author(s): Read, Tory

Funder(s): Annie E. Casey Foundation

View Report (8 pages; 750KB; PDF)

Area of focus: Low-Performing Schools


This report provides an overview of the Annie E. Casey Foundationís involvement with education programs that focus on community engagement. It reviews case studies of school districts that have both succeeded and experienced roadblocks in setting up Community Schools, and it summarizes programs Casey has sponsored in communities across the United States to get families and neighbors involved in local studentsí education.

Key Findings and/or Recommendations

+ Families and communities have increased involvement with the schools and a willingness to address problems, demand higher standards, and become more active in their childrenís education.

+ In one Indianapolis school, the graduation rate rose from approximately 30 percent to 70 percent after it became a community school.

+ In San Diego County, a parent involvement initiative was successful enough to attract attention from the state, which will be using it as a template for a statewide program.

- Without proper experience with expansion planning and full support from school leadership, a community school initiative in Washington State suffered setbacks.

Geographic Focus: CA; Denver, CO; Indianapolis, IN; New York City, NY; TX; White Center, WA

Subjects/Keywords: Low-performing schools; school reform; community; community schools; family

+ Successful strategy
= Observation
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