10th Annual
Community Schools Forum



Community Schools
in Action

 
Every community school looks slightly different, because it is developed through mutually beneficial partnerships with students, families, community agencies, businesses, and residents that are unique to that community.

Check out these
community school profiles to learn more about the powerful community school work of one district and two schools in Illinois.
 

You can also view these videos to really see community schools in action!

Community Schools Map

There are nearly 200 community schools in urban, surburban, and rural communities all over Illinois. Click on the interactive map to learn more about community schools in your area.  
 

Federation Newsletter
 
Federation members get access to our weekly eDigest which contains information about upcoming events, best practices, funding opportunities and much more.
 

View previous editions by clicking here.




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Rep. Aaron Schock (R-IL) Introduces Full Service Community Schools Act of 2014

Rep. Aaron Schock, a Republican representing Illinois' 18th Congressional District (Peoria, Quincy, Bloomington), joined forces with House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (D-MD) to introduce the Full-Service Community Schools Act of 2014 (HR 5168). The bipartisan bill would create a competitive grant program to expand the number of full-service community schools around the nation.
 


The introduction of the Full Service Community Schools Act of 2014 in the House is only the beginning of the journey.  With ongoing collaboration from our members at the local and national level, including the Coalition for Community Schools, we encourage every community school supporter to use this action alert to connect with your Representative to urge them to co-sponsor this bill to support the Community Schools Act of 2014.

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FY15 21st CCLC RFP Released!

ISBE released the FY15 21st CCLC RFP on Friday, June 27.  The application deadline is August 11, 2014 at 5 p.m.

Click here to access the RFP materials.
 
There will be a Technical Assistance Webinar on July 9th from 1:00-4:00 p.m. Click here for more information and to register for the Webinar.
 
Any questions regarding the grant and the parameters of the RFP should be directed to ISBE.

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Midwest Community Schools Forum

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Transition to Common Core Presents Challenges - and Opportunities - for Community Schools

Like almost every other state in the country, Illinois is making the shift to Common Core State Standards (CCSS). The new standards are aimed at ensuring that children and young people develop necessary critical thinking, analytical, problem-solving, and learning skills, and are prepared to do increasingly rigorous academic work as their educational careers progress. As schools embark upon the huge task of transitioning to the CCSS, it is absolutely essential that community school partners take every opportunity to support students' mastery of these rigorous requirements during out-of-school time programming, and work to engage parents as partners in the transition.

Community schools and resource coordinators, in particular, have an important role to play in helping schools transition to the CCSS.  With generous support from The Boeing Company, the Federation has partnered with Dr. Barbara Radner from the Polk Bros. Foundation Center for Urban Education at DePaul University to educate our members about the CCSS.

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Double Value Coupon Program Makes Healthy Foods Affordable and Accessible for Chicago Families

A partnership between the Experimental Station and the City of Chicago provides the Double Value Coupon Program (DVCP) at 30 Chicago farmers markets, beginning in June 2014.  The DVCP helps to make the fresh and healthy foods sold at farmers markets affordable for Chicagoans receiving LINK money, as part of the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).  The DVCP allows LINK customers to receive $1 coupon for every $1 spent - up to a given amount each week at the market - on fresh fruit, vegetables, and plants purchased at participating Farmers' Markets. 

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Full Service Community Schools Grant Application Released

After much anticipation the Department of Education released the Full Service Community Schools RFP on May 6th, with a June 20th deadline.  If you are planning to apply for the grant, we strongly encourage you to take advantage of the learning opportunities and resources outlined below to help prepare your application.

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Decrease Chronic Absenteeism, Boost Student Engagement

Reducing chronic absence takes an entire community, so community schools have a special role to play. High average daily attendance rates often mask chronic absence problems amongst a subset of a school's student body. The first step to increasing attendance is better understanding what school data is telling us and why students are missing so much school so specific interventions can be used to mitigate challenges to attendance.
 

Chronic Absences & Community Schools
 
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Urge Our Elected Officials to Support Community Schools

If you were not one of the 55 community schools youth, parents, partners, administrators or advocates who participated in our Advocacy Day in Springfield on April 30th, you can still make your voice heard.  Call (or visit, if you will be in Springfield in May) your legislators to let them know how important community schools are to the children and families in their district and ask them for their support.  It's especially important to seek their support for the release of the 21st CCLC RFP, for Teen REACH funding, and for adequate revenue generation.

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Recap of Making Sense of the Dollars & Cents

On April 17 we convened a Stakeholder Symposium, Making Sense of the Dollars and Cents: Understanding Illinois' budget, the impacts on our work, and opportunities for change to educate our members about Illinois' fiscal situation and how we can work together to make things different in the future.
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Oakland Youth Create Animated Video About Community Schools



This animated video project on the role community schools can play in uplifting children and neighborhoods was created by Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) students in the Media Enterprise Alliance (MEA) journalism and multimedia program sponsored by OUSD's Communications Department and KDOLTV-27. 
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A community school is a public school that acts as the hub of its community by engaging community resources to help meet student, family, and community needs. Community schools offer a range of on-site programs and services that support the success of students and their families. Every community school looks different bceause each school works to meet the unique needs of its unique students, families, and community members. The fundamental goals -- success for all students and families -- remain the same.

The Future of Public Education: Community Schools brings to life the different components of a community school, and uses real-life examples to highlight the ways in which community schools throughout Illinois are impacting students, families, and the surrounding communities.
 
to see this player.