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Community Strength and School Success

Community Strength and School Success

rachaelkoone's picture

I've really noticed throughout the readings for this class that when the community around a school is strong (Kirp, McKilip, Lee & Hawkins) the school tends to be very successful and vice cersa. When schools are closed in communities, this negatively affects the community by taking away a safe place for the neighborhood children, jobs for adults in the community, and a resource for families. The NYT article on future plans for chicago schools showcases the dire situation that many neighborhoods are facing as their schools are being closed by Mayor Emmanuel - many families are forced to send their kids to schools that are less ideal and more difficult to get to. McKilip writes that the secret to success that South Bronx Prep has is not only preparing their students academically, but supporting them by "merging academics with sociocultural development", making them feel like their academic journey is something that brings them all together, allowing students to feel supported by their school. The sense of community within the school is extremely important for those students who may not or will not be able to get academic or emotional support from their homes "A culture of college-going is particularly important when students do not have familial support and resources". Because of this, the sense of community within the school is even more important for college-bound students, especially between students and teachers so that students can have an adult who is familiar with the demands of college, which they may not be able to get from their parents. College aside, trust and understanding between students and teachers, especially in a small school that services students from 6-12th grade, allows for a more individualized approach to education, important for students who may have had a rocky foundation in elementary or past schools.

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