We want every Arkansas student to graduate prepared for success.


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  • News Release: ForwARd Arkansas Leadership Transition

    ForwARd Arkansas announced today that Executive Director Susan Harriman is taking early retirement and stepping down from her role in the organization, due to family medical issues, effective December 4, 2019.

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  • Improving Outcomes for Arkansas Students

    If we want our students to be able to effectively compete in the global market for jobs, we must dramatically improve educational outcomes in our state and consistently make informed and smart decisions on education policy.

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  • Letter to the Editor: Community Schools

    A growing body of educational research supports the community-school model as a success strategy for these schools, students and families. This approach focuses on identifying the needs in a specific school and connecting students and families to community-based resources and supports that can help remove barriers to learning.

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New, Statewide Initiative Prepares Children for Success

The Arkansas Campaign for Grade-Level Reading launched Excel by Eight (E8) in partnership with 28 organizations across the state. E8’s goal is to ensure all Arkansas children have equitable access to health care and education that maximizes their full potential.

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Crossett and Lee County Receive Grants to Expand After-School Programs

Crossett and Lee County, two ForwARd Communities, recently received grants to fund after-school programs in their communities. Thurman Green, our policy and community engagement associate, sat down with the grant writers.

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Crystal Johnson Named One of Arkansas’ 250 Most Influential Leaders

Through their partnership with ForwARd Arkansas, Independence County has become a dynamic center of higher learning and training with unique educational partnerships that begin early in K-12 public schools and advance through partnerships with higher education and business.

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Associations Between District-Provided Pre-K Attendance and Academic and Non-Academic Outcomes for Springdale Public Schools

This report analyzes the associations between district-provided Pre-K attendance and academic and non-academic outcomes for Springdale Public Schools.

A Parent and Teacher Evaluation of Springdale Public School’s District-Provided Pre-K

The goal of this report is to provide a descriptive analysis of the perceptions of quality and effectiveness of one district-provided Pre-K program from the perspectives of current Pre-K parents, Pre-K teachers, and Kindergarten parents.

A Parent and Teacher Evaluation of Pea Ridge School District’s Pre-K Program

This report seeks to expound upon the existing Pre-K literature and gain a more holistic understanding of the effects of Pre-K, by providing a parent and teacher perspective of district-provided Pre-K within an individual community.

ESSA Parent Toolkit Flyer

The ESSA Parent Toolkit Flyer was developed by ForwARd Arkansas in August 2019 to serve as a tool for school districts to educate parents and community members about the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and about what they can do to support their schools.

ESSA Parent Toolkit

The ESSA Parent Toolkit was developed by ForwARd Arkansas in August 2019 to serve as a tool for school districts to educate parents and community members about the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and about what they can do to support their schools.

Learning from Earle: Determining Best Practices for Rural Education Policy

This project was carried out under the direction of Dr. Jay Barth, M.E. and Ima Graves Peace Distinguished Professor of Politics and Director of the Arkansas Policy Project, in collaboration with ForwARd Arkansas and with support from the Rural Community Alliance.

Independence Promise Toolkit

This toolkit provides resources that highlight the step by step process of engaging business and community in educational philanthropy and utilizing the local non-profit infrastructure to advocate at the state level.

IMPACT Education Summit Toolkit

This toolkit provides resources for replicating Independence County's IMPACT Education Summit. The summit had approximately 400 attendees included all stakeholders such as educators, parents, students, business leaders, state agencies, local college representatives, etc.

Building Capacity to Move from Co-Existing to Collaborating with Community

Schools across our state define engagement in many different ways. This resource highlights how two schools in Independence County have brokered relationships with their community to move from simply co-existing to collaborating and authentic engagement.

Year in Review 2018

The ForwARd team began the year by developing a cohesive plan and related calendar of work centered around our Communities, convenings and partnership building.