Bright Futures in Joplin, Missouri

Context/Need In 2008, when CJ Huff was recruited to lead Joplin, Missouri’s schools, his main charge was to raise the district’s high school graduation rate, then at 73 percent. Having served as superintendent of the high-poverty school district of Eldon, Missouri since 2004, Huff recognized that high and rising student poverty rates, and the disconnect … Continued

Partners for Education at Berea College, Berea, Kentucky

Context/Need Appalachian Kentucky has historically been synonymous with rural poverty, with many of its counties consistently ranked among the poorest in the nation.1 While the War on Poverty of the 1960s and 70s brought new people and programs to the region, the area saw less improvement than many others, and economic instability has only increased in … Continued

Vancouver Public Schools (Vancouver, WA)

In 2008, as an outgrowth of the district’s strategic planning process,2 VPS developed a proactive, community-schools approach to turning around poverty-impacted sites: Family-Community Resource Centers (FCRCs). That strategy has proved to build school assets,
strengthen neighborhoods, and increase student success.

Northside Achievement Zone (North Minneapolis, MN)

Northside Achievement Zone (NAZ) was formed in 2010 as an outgrowth of the PEACE Foundation, an organization committed to ending intergenerational poverty in North Minneapolis. After winning a federal Promise Neighborhood implementation grant in 2012, NAZ was able to significantly expand both its services and its scope, partnering with many local non-profits and increasing its prior goal of serving approximately 150 students to 2500 by the end of 2016. Inspired by the Harlem Children’s Zone, the program’s three main goals are: engaging parents to strengthen their ability to support their children’s achievement, improving schools and the education experience through a continuum of services, and providing whole family wrap-around support to stabilize families and households and remove barriers to learning.

City Connects (Boston, MA)

City Connects was created in 1999 as an evidence-based, scalable practice in Boston. It developed as a collaboration among Boston College, Boston Public Schools, and community agencies. With its foundations in the ìfull-serviceî or community school model, and after an extensive community-wide planning process, City Connects allows districts and schools to wrap needed supports, enrichments, and services around students in order to address barriers standing in the way of school success. The practice engages every classroom teacher, leverages community resources, and ensures that each student receives the tailored supports and enrichment opportunities necessary to learn effectively and thrive in school.

The Children’s Aid Society Community Schools (New York, NY)

In 1992, the Children’s Aid Society formed a part- nership with the New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE) to integrate a strong school curriculum with out-of-school enrichment pro- gramming, as well as child and family support ser- vices designed to remove barriers to students’ learning and healthy development in area schools.

East Durham Children’s Initiative (East Durham, NC)

Inspired by Paul Tough’s book, Whatever it Takes, which documents Geoffrey Canada’s development of the Harlem Children’s Zone, community leaders in Durham were determined to implement a similar strategy in East Durham. Following a succession of planning activities, community conversations, seed grants, steering committee meetings, and exploratory site visits, including a visit to Harlem, the East Durham Children’s Initiative (EDCI) was launched in 2009.

Bright Futures (Pea Ridge, AR)

In 2013, Pea Ridge superintendent Rick Neal, who had been the Pea Ridge high school principal from 2005 to 2012, had no way of addressing students needs through school-based strategies alone, and no mechanism for leveraging the resources of the community to meet those needs. Neal saw the potential to address the unmet needs of students and their families through Bright Futures, an organization that uses community-building to tackle poverty-related impediments to learning and student success.