School as Community Hubs: Integrating Support Services to Drive Educational Outcomes

Reads and Resources

In this paper from the Brookings Institute, the authors begin by noting that the causes of the achievement gap in our schools are multifaceted and interdependent. In order for schools to effectively tackle the many problems affecting student achievement, the authors suggest that schools should operate as hubs for the school community. As hubs, schools are organized to control and provide services beyond their traditional roles. These services may include health services, social services support, parental services, and other supports that impact the interdependent factors of student success.

The authors identify some of the primary obstacles that schools face in operating as hubs:

  • Sharing student information and coordinating across institutions is difficult;
  • Budget walls limit how funds are to be spent, often ignoring the positive externalities associated with improved academic performance;
  • Schools leaders need training to manage integrated services; and
  • Use of intermediary partners can limit school control of an integrated approach.

However, school leaders continue to find ways to address these obstacles as they integrate a greater range of social and health services within their schools.

Read it here.