The Center for Community Schools* opened in the fall of 2014 in the College of Health and Public Affairs. In 2018, the center was realigned and is now housed with the College of Community Innovation and Education at the University of Central Florida.
The center’s primary purpose is to assist school districts and communities interested in establishing, sustaining and improving community schools. Areas of primary center focus include community school technical assistance, university-assisted partnerships, training and development, and assessment and evaluation.
Community Partnership Schools™ Model
In 2010, the first Community Partnership Schools™ model community school was founded by University of Central Florida, Children’s Home Society of Florida, and Orange County Public Schools at Evans High School in Orlando, Florida. This model engages four core partners who commit to a long-term partnership in order to launch, advance and sustain the Community Partnership School. Core partners include:
- a school district
- a health care provider
- a university or college
- a community-based not-for-profit
Partners work together to provide students with a wide variety of academic support and enrichment opportunities, and ensures access to medical, dental and behavioral health services.
*Formerly Center for Community Schools and Child Welfare Innovation
The Center for Community Schools (CCS) Advisory Board are ambassadors who provide expertise in pursuit of the CCS mission and vision. The advisory board helps to sustain and expand CCS efforts, access knowledge-based resources, program accountability by way of guidance and feedback, as well as serve as partners in community collaborations. The CCS Advisory Board is comprised of leaders from the field of community schools as well as other stakeholders for the relevancy and quality of center activities.
Meetings are scheduled as needed but no less than once per quarter and may be in person or via teleconference. An agenda and any materials to be reviewed are sent to all participants at least one week prior to each meeting.
Community Partnership Schools™ Advisory Committee
The Community Partnership Schools™ (CPS) Advisory Committee consists of community partners involved in planning and implementing Community Partnership School initiatives through the UCF Center for Community Schools. The goal for participation in the advisory committee is to include one member from each project site and to have representatives from school districts, universities, health care providers and community-based not-for-profit organizations represented. The CPS Advisory Committee may also recruit up to three at-large members with an interest in education, child and family services, or health care, and one member experienced in working with Florida Foundations.
The Grants Committee reviews applications from school districts and/or their community partners for planning and implementation grants. The Grants Committee decides which grant request(s) will be approved and reviews each proposal based on how it conforms to grant guidelines developed by the UCF Center for Community Schools Advisory Board. Factors include demonstrating that the required partners are in place and committed, the level of community match contributed, community support demonstrated, etc.
The Grants Committee consists of members from the Center for Community Schools and the UCF College of Community Innovation and Education, at-large members with backgrounds in grant evaluation, public policy, education, business, etc.
Meetings are scheduled as needed to review grant requests both for new planning grants and funding for implementation and ongoing operations for existing community school sites certified by the Center for Community Schools. An agenda and copies of all grants to be reviewed are sent to all participants at least two weeks prior to meetings.