Hello everyone! This is my first year as coordinator.  We are also just starting the first year of Community Schools at our school.  The school has completed needs assessments.  I am just curious?  Is there a year by year expectations of what we need to do make sure this is successful?  I keep hearing it can take a few years to get things rolling effectively.  I don't want to go to fast or to slow.  Hope this makes some kind of sense.  What are some ideas I need to be working on for the first year of implementation?

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Danny, I apologize this response is a bit late! My first year as a Coordinator was actually this year and it was the first year as a Community School. During my first year I spent a lot of my time getting to know the school, as well as building community partnerships. Partnership building between my community partners was huge for my ability to provide quality programming to students as well as quality resources. It is important to really 1. understand the needs of your students and families 2. understand the community partners and what they are able to provide to meet those needs of your students and families. I am not sure if you created an alignment plan yet, but based off of my community needs assessments I prioritized things based off of the resources I had available and put them into a plan for the school year with a list of ways I can meet that goal. For example, a lot of our students did not have access to basic needs items so I spent a lot of time developing partnerships, and bringing in donations to provide for students, this was a number one priority on my alignment plan so I focus on that. Always celebrate small wins!!! Especially in a new community school, it takes a good 3-5 years to see impact and to get things rolling effectively. Also you want QUALITY over QUANTITY. Organize yourself and give yourself a good pace. There is so much work to do but you are only one person! Set realistic goals! Hope that helps :).

Thank you for your response.  The school had done a needs assessment before I took over this position.  So much of what they needed help with was internal mindset.  However, working with our community partners is for sure a plus to help change some minds sets as well.  I have started working with some of our partners getting some game plans ready for different scenarios for when we go back.  Some partners are waiting to commit until they see our reopening plan. Which I understand.  When I took this position the beginning of June.  It was overwhelming.  Finally, I have just put things at my pace to get things done.  My previous position with the district helped me make some great contacts in our community already which has helped tremendously.  I agree also quality over quantity.  Slow and steady wins the race.  Yes this as helped.  Thank you for your reply!

Kelly O'Sada said:

Danny, I apologize this response is a bit late! My first year as a Coordinator was actually this year and it was the first year as a Community School. During my first year I spent a lot of my time getting to know the school, as well as building community partnerships. Partnership building between my community partners was huge for my ability to provide quality programming to students as well as quality resources. It is important to really 1. understand the needs of your students and families 2. understand the community partners and what they are able to provide to meet those needs of your students and families. I am not sure if you created an alignment plan yet, but based off of my community needs assessments I prioritized things based off of the resources I had available and put them into a plan for the school year with a list of ways I can meet that goal. For example, a lot of our students did not have access to basic needs items so I spent a lot of time developing partnerships, and bringing in donations to provide for students, this was a number one priority on my alignment plan so I focus on that. Always celebrate small wins!!! Especially in a new community school, it takes a good 3-5 years to see impact and to get things rolling effectively. Also you want QUALITY over QUANTITY. Organize yourself and give yourself a good pace. There is so much work to do but you are only one person! Set realistic goals! Hope that helps :).

This was very helpful information for me too.  I am a new Coordinator and I feel that a lot of my job conflicts with the Title 1 Resource teachers and the Family Outreach Worker.  Just trying to carve my own path and looking at the needs of the families is possibly the best place to start.  Thank you!

Kelly O'Sada said:  

Danny, I apologize this response is a bit late! My first year as a Coordinator was actually this year and it was the first year as a Community School. During my first year I spent a lot of my time getting to know the school, as well as building community partnerships. Partnership building between my community partners was huge for my ability to provide quality programming to students as well as quality resources. It is important to really 1. understand the needs of your students and families 2. understand the community partners and what they are able to provide to meet those needs of your students and families. I am not sure if you created an alignment plan yet, but based off of my community needs assessments I prioritized things based off of the resources I had available and put them into a plan for the school year with a list of ways I can meet that goal. For example, a lot of our students did not have access to basic needs items so I spent a lot of time developing partnerships, and bringing in donations to provide for students, this was a number one priority on my alignment plan so I focus on that. Always celebrate small wins!!! Especially in a new community school, it takes a good 3-5 years to see impact and to get things rolling effectively. Also you want QUALITY over QUANTITY. Organize yourself and give yourself a good pace. There is so much work to do but you are only one person! Set realistic goals! Hope that helps :).

Much success to you as I am in the same boat!  May I ask what you did to build some of your community partnerships.

Hello. I started building some of the community partnership from my previous position with the district.  I worked a lot with the Juvenile Probation office.  From there, I started hearing about different community groups that worked with our school district and sent emails or made phone calls introducing myself and asking how they could be more assistance to what our community schools goal wanted to achieve.  Anytime I was out even on weekends if I saw or heard of a group that I could possibly benefit from I would introduce myself and exchange contact information.  Finally, working with our main school office, various people had connections with like our Library or local college that helped get me going in the right direction.  One of our support groups has organized a virtual resource fair at the end of the month I will be taking part in to hope and build more relationships.  The big thing start emailing and making some phone calls introducing yourself. 

We are still all virtual learning here.  Some of our community support has started using zoom and other virtual formats to help reaching out to students and families.

Misty Pearson said:

Much success to you as I am in the same boat!  May I ask what you did to build some of your community partnerships.

Thank you for your response.  That is what I have been doing as our positions were just created this year a lot of what the other two CSA's and myself have been doing is a lot of phone calls and emails.  I like the idea of being out in the community too.  Thanks again!

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