Promoting Community Involvement in Schools

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  • 0:04 Community Involvement
  • 1:53 The Different…
  • 2:24 Tier One
  • 3:32 Tier Two
  • 4:49 Tier Three
  • 5:53 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Maryalice Leister

Maryalice has taught secondary and college English and trained new online teachers, and has a master's degree in Online Teaching and Learning.

School districts are often at the physical center of their neighborhoods. Parents expect their schools to educate and care for their children, while offering the best of where they live, so it's a perfect marriage when the extended community is involved in the life and needs of the school.

Community Involvement

The red pickup truck pulled onto the south lawn of the school, towing the dunk tank behind it. The principal came out to meet the gentleman who jumped down from the cab. Jake was one of the older farmers who lived near the school. He had called Mr. Thompson, the principal, to offer the fire hall's dunk tank when he saw flyers for the elementary school's spring carnival. He had also brought his hundred-foot hose to fill it and promised he would drain the tank and return it when the carnival was over. Jake remembered the Junior Honor Society members who voluntarily shoveled his driveway last winter when he had surgery and could not do it himself. This was his way of thanking the students for their unsolicited help.

This example is a simple one and illustrates how many stakeholders have an interest in the schools their local children attend. Each group within a neighborhood brings their own unique influence and connection to the school community. Often, it's as simple as a school neighbor who reaches out to return a favor.

Students are at the center of circles of involvement. They are the focus and reason why the school exists and teachers teach. However, neither learning nor teaching happens in isolation and without moral and financial support. Districts are undeniably limited in what can be provided when the neighbors and citizens aren't supportive of the neighborhood school. For this reason, it's important to remember that supporters come from a variety of public and private sectors. School personnel are wise to always be facing outward when meeting and greeting the public.

Since anyone can access testing data, district improvement metrics, and Board of Education minutes to develop a personal, fact-based opinion, strong and positive personal connections become the lifeblood to the school. If the school fails to work at positive self-promotion, many important opportunities for interaction, extracurricular activities, and financial support are lost.

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