community_schools_logoWhat is a Community School?

Hartford Community Schools are a strategy for aligning resources to support student achievement, strengthen families and build stronger communities. With a focus on extended days and hours, students and families are invited to make use of the school site as locus of community for learning, recreation and building neighborhood connections.

Hartford Community Schools represent a comprehensive approach for improving academic achievement by coordinating the services and supports that students need to be successful in school, while supporting the development of healthy families and communities.

How are Community Schools different?

At a community school, a lead agency partners with the school to plan, implement and sustain on-site services that provide a holistic approach to well-being and development for children, their families and the wider community.  These services include:
  • Health Services – medical, dental and vision screening services as well as sports and recreational activities
  • Mental Health Services – clinical services, case management, crisis interventions and specialized referrals
  • Youth Development/Out-of-School Time – safe school buildings are open for extended days and hours, providing youth development and leadership programming, academic enrichment, homework help, tutoring, recreational, cultural and summer school programs
  • Life-Long Learning – adult education opportunities include English as a Second Language, GED courses, financial literacy and technology classes
  • Parent Enrichment/Engagement – schools involve parents in meaningful ways through family dinners/PTO meetings, effective communication, parenting workshops, cultural events and civic engagement opportunities
  • Community Engagement – effective partnerships with private businesses and civic organizations promote the development of the community and stability of the neighborhood.

The Community School is a center of community life, providing activities and services for students and their families, as well as the wider community. They are open beyond regular school hours: from early morning into the evening, on weekends and holidays. Nationally, it has been demonstrated that these changes lead to improved attendance and academic performance.

Examples of extra-scholastic resources available at a community school might include:

  • After school programs for academic and cultural enrichment
  • Services for adults, such as GED and ESL classes, job readiness, and financial literacy training
  • A curriculum that incorporates the teaching of social skills, life skills, and character development
  • Physical and mental health services

One of the reasons we support a choice of schools for students is the extent of cultural diversity in our student population. The impact of external influences on a student’s ability to perform has been acknowledged for a long time. By recognizing the student as part of a family, and part of a community, the Community Schools model addresses the comprehensive needs of school-age youth.

You can also find information regarding the Financing Case Study and the Community Schools Evaluation.

Are Community Schools effective?

Hartford Community Schools increased their state test scores by 5.6 points from 2009 to 2010.  This represents twice the district’s average increase over the last year, and 15% growth since 2008.*  As community schools typically several years to begin to show results, it is greatly encouraging that Hartford Community Schools have shown such impressive early results.  In addition to these findings, Hartford Community Schools have also achieved significant efficiency of service provision by linking delivery to a central point of service that is easily accessible and comfortable for students and families.

community_schools_success_graph

Who supports Community Schools?

The School-Community Partnership is a collaborative of Hartford Public Schools, local funders, city departments and intermediaries which guides the work of Hartford Community Schools.  Hartford Community Schools is currently funded by the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, Hartford Public Schools, the Office for Youth Services, and the United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut.  Additional funding sources for programming at Hartford Community Schools include the CT State Department of Education, family and community foundations, federal and state contracts and in-kind agency contributions.

Future Leaders of Our Communities

School choice is not simply about variety. It is about responding to the diverse needs of Hartford’s students, and creating opportunities for the community at large to engage with our schools. Community Schools play a valuable role in our district-wide commitment to providing today’s youth with the foundation to build a stronger future.

Which schools are Community Schools?

Community School:
Lead Agency:
Principal:
Community School Director:
For more information, contact:
Asian Studies Academy at Bellizzi (PreK – 8th)
COMPASS Youth Collaborative
Mario Cruz
Damion Morgan
(860) 695-2454 /
Community School:
Lead Agency:
Principal:
Community School Director:
For more information, contact:
Alfred E. Burr Elementary School (PreK – 8th)
The Village for Families and Children
Fabienne Pierre-Maxwell
Barbara Vita
(860) 695-3097 or 5061 /
Community School:
Lead Agency:
Principal:
Community School Director:
For more information, contact:
Thirman L. Milner School (PreK – 8th)
Catholic Charities
Karen Lott
Thomas Oakley
(860) 695-4457 
Community School:
Lead Agency:
Principal:
Community School Director:
For more information, contact:
Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy (6th – 11th)
COMPASS Youth Collaborative
Sally Biggs
Julia Corrigan
(860) 695-7286
Community School:
Lead Agency:
Principal:
Community School Director:
For more information, contact:
Burns Latino Studies Academy (PreK – 8th)
COMPASS Youth Collaborative
Victor Cristafaro
Elizabeth Giannetta-Ramos
(860) 695-3024 /
Community School:
Lead Agency:
Principal:
Community School Director:
For more information, contact:
(860) 695-2010

For more information, please contact:

Nuchette Black-Burke, M.Ed., Coordinator, Hartford Community Schools

(860) 695-8748

Nuchette.Black-Burke@hartfordschools.org