March 2011 Your Turn

Community involvement is important -- no one involved with the public schools would dispute that. As Minnesota reader Carol Ladwig put it: “A community’s commitment will ultimately be reflected not only by its graduates, but also in its business growth, government involvement, social connections, and every other asset of a community.”

But just how do you achieve maximum citizen community input and support? With so many constituencies to address, and so many demands on people’s time, that question may be harder to answer than ever.

Still, in response to January’s question, “How successfully do you involve your community?,” 65 percent of you said you’ve had “some success,” and 18 percent said you do “an excellent job.” Another 12 percent said community involvement is “a real challenge,” and 6 percent marked “none of the above.”

Your Turn readers provided some excellent examples of ways their districts are reaching out to the community, including newsletters at the district and building level, parent portals, regular superintendent and school board meetings with high school students, participation by school staff in community activities, partnerships with local newspapers to address topics of district importance, and a district Facebook page.

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