OCDE to host two-day community schools workshop on Nov. 17-18

 Community Schools Fundamentals Workshop

An upcoming two-day workshop hosted by OCDE will break down the fundamentals of community schools for educational teams and partners seeking to transform their own campuses.

Organized by the Community Schools Learning Exchange — also known as CSLX — and the National Center for Community Schools, the CS Fundamentals Workshop is set to take place at the Orange County Department of Education’s Costa Mesa offices on Nov. 17 and Nov. 18.

California is investing heavily in the creation of community schools as part of its overall strategy to improve learning through a “whole child” approach. The model encourages campuses to partner with families, community organizations, health care providers and social services agencies to put in place wraparound supports for young learners. 

Services at a community school might include free healthy meals, health care, tutoring and mental health counseling before, during and after school, as well as on weekends. Advocates say the goal is to reduce barriers to learning by creating community hubs where resources are centralized to ensure students’ academic, health and social-emotional needs are met.

The CS Fundamentals Workshop is intended to help participants develop a common understanding of community schools, identify opportunities for collaboration, and curate new and existing strategies for student success. The session is specifically designed for school and district teams that have received planning or implementation grants to establish these types of schools — or teams that are interested in applying for future state or federal funding. 

Similar workshops were held in Sacramento, San Jose, San Diego and, most recently, Fresno.

Last year, the state Legislature announced an allocation of $3 billion over seven years to help under-resourced schools improve student outcomes through the California Community Schools Partnership Program. A dozen Orange County districts and charter schools successfully applied for the initial round of funding, including OCDE on behalf of its Alternative Education program.

“This is a transformational moment for California’s schools, and our nation-leading investment in community school strategies will ensure that our campuses will become resource hubs for our neighborhoods, and that our families and educators lead the efforts to transform outcomes for students,” State Superintendent Tony Thurmond said in May.

To learn more about the CS Fundamentals Workshop, or to register, visit https://www.eventleaf.com/e/cs-fundamentals-orangecounty.