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Extending the Responsibilities for Schools Beyond The School Door

Want to see more students thrive in school? Here's a solid list of upstream factors that, addressed proactively, would dramatically improve students' experience of the education system.

"Taking our cue from a range of empirical research, we propose that ‘the problems’ of schools are found in a broader set of social realities existing beyond the school door. These include, but are not limited to:

• mothers’ access to prenatal care; 
• children’s access to health care (e.g. pediatricians, dentists, etc.); 
• access to preschool and day care; 
• employment opportunities for parents that offer a living wage and benefits; 
• safe access to green spaces (e.g. parks, gardens, playgrounds, etc.); 
• access to local libraries; 
• access to affordable housing; 
• levels of exposure to toxins (e.g. lead-based paint, asbestos, etc.)."

Read the full paper, "Extending the Responsibilities for Schools beyond the School Door," by Kent Den Heyer and Andrew Pifel, Policy Futures in Education, Volume 5, Number 4, 2007.

Showing 3 reactions

  • Jordan Thompson
    commented 2016-09-30 22:05:07 -0600
    Why aren’t our schools community hubs, where families and children access the prenatal care, a quality, affordable preschool, adult community learning opportunities, and so on – right in our public schools? I’m floored every time as a parent I send a monthly cheque to the out-of-school care in our child’s elementary school. This small business employs people with marginal training and qualifications, for relatively poor pay. The school charges them an enormous premium to rent the space, to help cover its own costs because of inadequate provincial funding. Investing properly in early learning, childcare and K-6 is not only the right thing to do, it will save Canada on other costs downstream.
  • Ron Martin
    commented 2014-05-13 12:18:17 -0600
    A few weeks ago I noticed an ad from a local education authority requesting applications for the position of a part time consultant who would mentor teachers of adolescents in techniques for improving literacy. Without a doubt a noble goal,but at the same time I couldn’t help but wonder whether in the long run a much more effective approach might have been to hire a full time library outreach person to work with parents of preschool children. A program which which would include a library of books being made available to parents of preschool children by being delivered to the door on a regularly scheduled basis. This type of approach would possibly do much to increase the crucially important activity of parents reading to their kids and ensure that more youngsters arrive at school on a more equal footing thus eliminating some of the need for remedial intervention during their school years.
  • @UpstreamAction tweeted this page. 2014-05-05 14:23:09 -0600
    Want to see more students thrive in #school? Here's a solid list of #upstream factors that, addressed proactively... http://www.thinkupstream.net/extending_the_responsibilities_for_schools_beyond_the_school_door?recruiter_id=21
Connect upstream.