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News Room

  Free To Grow
  Mailman School
  of Public Health
  Columbia University
  722 West 168th Street,
  8th Floor
  New York, NY 10032

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NOTE: as of April 17, 2007, the Free to Grow program has closed.

Building More Effective Community Schools


Every family wants the best education possible for their children. The promise of a good education is a crucial part of the American dream of opportunity and advancement. Unfortunately, this promise goes largely unfulfilled for children and youth living in communities with high concentrations of poverty.  But it doesn't have to be that way. There are examples of excellent schools that serve children and families in tough neighborhood schools that improve the life chances of individuals, support families, and help build strong communities.

Building More Effective Community Schools, a resource guide available from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, details promising approaches, program models, and resources for building strong, community-responsive schools using strategies that work. These include: (1) transforming existing public schools by improving standards and assessment, offering more opportunities for professional development, and other school reforms; (2) creating smaller community-based public schools; (3) engaging families in school reform efforts; (4) fostering school-community partnerships that strengthen families and neighborhoods; (5) increasing school choice through vouchers and private scholarships and (6) supporting systemic reforms in the key areas of accountability, curriculum, governance, and finance.


copyright 2008 Free To Grow
Free To Grow is a national program supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation with direction and technical assistance provided by the Mailman School of Public Health of Columbia University.