Collectively Building a Foundation for Student Success

As a state, we often ask, “How can we lay the foundation for learning success?” Is it building a pipeline of supportive teachers or providing regular opportunities for students to gain academic and durable skills? It turns out that learning success can’t be derived from a single factor. Rather, data shows it requires a combination of innovative approaches tailored to students, schools and local communities.

That’s where the community school strategy comes in. Research indicates we can better meet students’ unique needs and promote a more effective, equitable education for all by fostering meaningful partnerships between schools, families and communities. In 2021, Forward worked with partners to support policies elevating community schools as a high-impact option, especially for Arkansas districts with a high population of economically disadvantaged students. Since then, we have also supported the Little Rock and Batesville School Districts with their implementation.

The community schools strategy has and will continue to evolve. As we look ahead, intentional partnerships will remain crucial to the goal of enhancing student outcomes and supporting whole-child, family and community prosperity.

Arkansas Coalition for Community Schools


VIDEO: Community School Coordinators

Contact: Meghan Thompson,

Community Schools in Arkansas

Batesville and Little Rock School Districts