The need for integrated school and community planning is discussed is my recent post. Offering a model for how effective school-community planning, Roy Strickland, designer/architect/U.Michigan professor writes about what he calls City of Learning model, “an emerging strategy for revitalizing urban public school systems” (p. 1). He explains:
COL is built on the premise that teachers and learners can contribute to community life and community resources can contribute to learning. It also reflects educational reform movements such as “small” schools, pilot schools, and public/private partnerships; technology’s influence on learning, school administration, and spatial design; and the social capital and economic power of school students, teachers, and staff.” (p. 5).
The COL model has ten principles which you can read (p. 5). But the ones that stand out to me:
Integrate COL stakeholders – teachers, students, administrators, parents, and civicand business leaders – into the planning process.
Coordinate school projects as part of a strategic plan. School projects can represent the largest capital investments in neighborhoods and towns, yet often are planned individually. Their coordination can maximize educational and community benefits, reduce facilities duplication, and minimize neighborhood dislocation.
That seems to the point to me.