Aligning existing resources

Circumstances outside the classroom can drastically influence children's ability to learn. Often, students come to school with complex family and emotional problems that prevent them from focusing on school work. These problems also can lead to issues with behavior and attendance.

Yet budgetary problems in recent years have forced schools to make deep cuts to the support services that many students need to overcome these barriers to learning.

At the same time, agencies and organizations outside the school system that work to support students' emotional and physical health have also cut back services. Too often, the array of community services is neither well coordinated or focused on the areas of greatest need.

Models like Cincinnati’s Strive education partnership bring a broad spectrum of community participants to the table and use solid data to identify how those partners can collaborate to create effective interventions and avoid costly redundancies. They look at children's complete educational journey, from cradle to career, to smooth students' paths to success.

We are researching whether the wider implementation of models like these can bring much-needed additional resources to Ohio’s schools in a way that not only improves the availability of services but also ultimately impacts student achievement.

We are looking for solutions that:

  • encourage new ways of thinking about school structure that take into account the entire education system and the entire child
  • create more efficient wraparound services
  • better align philanthropic resources to meet education needs