Title:Breaking the mold: combining community schools with expanded learning time to help educationally disadvantaged students.
Subject:Education – community schools
Publisher:Center for American Progress
Place of Publication:Washington DC
Date of Publication:2010
In general, our public schools treat the majority of children within a school building the same regardless of their lives outside of school. But what about the students who face nonacademic obstacles to learning? A student who does not have access to preventive health care, for example, may be confronted with impediments to success in school. And what about the student who is struggling academically and could benefit from additional time for instruction and enrichment than what is prescribed under the traditional school calendar? Teachers and administrators try their best to help students succeed, but they typically lack the capacity to provide additional supports to children beyond academic instruction. Teachers run up against the inflexible confines imposed by the school calendar. They often lack time to cover all material. And the demands of meeting academic standards often mean that enrichment opportunities at school are placed on the backburner. It’s time to re-envision how resources can be used to help struggling children succeed academically. This paper will examine two schoolwide reform models—community schools and expanded learning time—that challenge the rigid boundaries of the conventional school model in order to close the achievement gap. The reforms analyzed in this paper are targeted toward students who are “educationally disadvantaged” because they live in disproportionately low- or lower middle-income communities—both white and nonwhite—or who attend schools that are predominantly comprised of minority students. These educationally disadvantaged kids can benefit from both the community-school and expanded- learning-time models.
Table Of Contents:
1 Introduction and summary 6 What is a community school? 8 What is expanded learning time for schools? 10 Each reform model strengthens the other: The benefits of expanded learning time 15 Each reform model strengthens the other: Support services of community schools enhance the ELT model 19 Important considerations 25 Bankrolling community schools and expanded learning time initiatives 32 Conclusion 33 Endnotes 35 About the author and acknowledgements