What are Community Schools

Full Service Community School refers to a school that uses a “community school approach” aimed at achieving educational success and physical, social, and emotional well-being for students, families, and community. It is not a program, nor simply a set of co-located services at a school site. Rather it is the next evolution of “wrap-around” or support services – an approach to schools that integrates ALL the supports and opportunities students need to be successful into the very fabric of a school.

A full service community school is one in which necessary student and family support services, (including the academic and learning experiences), are mobilized through intentional partnerships, thus providing opportunities, building on assets, and addressing the whole child.

The full service community school aims to optimize opportunities and quality of education and services. It is equitable and culturally responsive. Through shared leadership, coordination, and a collective responsibility for student, family, and community success, the opportunities and services are embedded and integrated into the daily life of the school and into the landscape of the school community.

A core characteristic of community schools is the intentional integration of varied supports, services, and opportunities into the core mission of the school. It involves:

  • the development of a comprehensive array of services to address the varied needs of each student;
  • the development of operational mechanisms that demand collaboration between academic, health and social services, and other supports and opportunities to support student success.

What Are Full Service Community School Districts
A Full Service Community School District is one that fully embraces the Full Service Community Schools approach. It develops partnerships with key public and private entities, such as city, county, community and faith based organizations, higher education, business, and community and family representatives. Together with partners, it develops an infrastructure for joint oversight, accountability, and service delivery that speak to joint ownership for the success of students, family and community. Internally the District has a strong supportive relationship with its schools and the communities it serves. This is evidenced through its organizational design, systems, policies, operations, and professional development in which effective, high quality, responsive practices, and the sustained optimal leveraging of resources are viewed as critical to ensuring successful students and healthy families and communities.

For other more information on full service community schools

Key Elements of Full Service Community School Approach
The Six Conditions of Learning achieved by Full Service Community Schools
San Francisco Bay Area Full Service Community Schools Framework