Posted on September 23, 2021
A College Spark funded rural project in support of Innovia’s Say Yes to Education initiative.
For children in rural America, the possibilities for a brighter future can sometimes seem out of reach. Physical distances, a lack of specialized resources, and small-town economic disruptions can create unique obstacles in rural school districts. At Innovia Foundation, we believe that every student should leave high school with the belief that they can pursue their dreams regardless of background or circumstances.
Say Yes to Education centers around a belief that the responsibility for preparing and inspiring our children rests with theentirecommunity. Too often, school improvement initiatives are championed primarily by the school board, district administration or educational stakeholders. However, rural communities and schools have a shared stake in the success of local students. Community collaboration and investment are vital to closing this urban-rural school divide.
Steps in this Pilot Initiative for Say Yes involve using a proven assessment to inform community conversation that can shape successful improvement efforts. Three forums will take place in each community:
Forum 1. Taking the Pulse – Learn about strengths and challenges for rural students and share how this project can help build and maintain culture and climate for school improvement. Introduce the Center for Educational Effectiveness and characteristics of high performing schools along with Innovia Foundation’s role in supporting community endowments.
Forum 2. Sharing Results – Working with the Center for Educational Effectiveness, results from the Educational Effectiveness Survey and student outcome indicators from the district will be shared in a community education data walk. The data walk includes small group conversations around relevant topics followed by a facilitated conversation to talk about future community-school partnerships.
Forum 3: Building Lasting Partnerships – A forum in year two which will solidify school-community partnerships and establish commitments. The goal for this forum will be to launch a sustainable ‘education roundtable’ that can advance community education priorities and expand commitment of time, treasure, and talent for local schools.
Innovia Foundation serves as the community foundation supporting area nonprofits and local efforts throughout Eastern Washington. As part of our work, we are seeking your input on how to support young people and students in this community.
At these community gatherings, we will share free food and lively conversation while discussing your ideas about how to promote student success. We will share important data points, including results from a recent school-community connection survey. During this interactive ‘Data Walk,’ community members can share their experiences and perspectives about this data and potential solutions for preparing local students to be tomorrows leaders.
Click here to register and please contact Meg Lindsay, email@example.com, with any questions