Chronic underfunding. Teacher shortages. Gun violence. Mental health crises. Political attacks by elected officials. An overemphasis on standartized testing.

America’s public schools face countless challenges that seem to be more insurmountable with each passing school year.

Public schools from small-town Florida to downtown Los Angeles are using a century-old strategy to overcome these challenges, with striking results.

These schools are transforming into “community schools,” listening to and collaborating with families, students, and the surrounding communities to not only improve the academic performance and student well-being, but also solve problems beyond the classroom and campus walls.

Research shows that community schools that adhere to best practices improve student educational outcomes, increase attendance, improve peer/adult relationships and attitudes toward school, and reduce racial and economic achievement gaps. We also know that for every dollar invested in a community school, the community gets $15 back because better schools boost the economy and well-being of its population.

From the introduction to “How Community Schools are Transforming Public Education,” a collection of stories about community schools that are transforming the way they function and demonstrating progress on a variety of outcome measures.

Read the full report here.


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