November 2013 Update on the Partnership
Dear Friends –
Over the summer we had rich dialogues with our governance bodies focused on the need to drive the work of our four Collaboratives toward measurable impacts. Together with our partners, we have spent much of the fall working to support this shift from planning to action, with a focus on interim measures of progress.
- In the Ready for Kindergarten Collaborative, principals of the eight implementation site school communities across our six districts are moving forward on common, research-based practices to strengthen the transition into kindergarten for students and their families. Partners also contributed to a focused campaign to register more incoming kindergartners on-time, and work is underway to broaden peer support for parents and children, building on successful models in the health field.
- In the Communities Supporting Youth Collaborative, partners are working in six demonstration school communities to implement a common attendance and engagement protocol, building on strategies similar to those currently getting results in the David Douglas School District.
- The work of the Eliminating Disparities Collaborative is highlighted by the establishment of board-approved equity policies in four additional districts across the county. In addition, members are currently implementing a racial equity assessment tool that was developed by the Collaborative.
- The Ninth Grade Counts Collaborative has adopted a set of evidence-based Quality Standards that are being brought to life by work teams building tools and guidance to help all Collaborative members align with these promising practices to deliver the strongest programs possible.
Beyond progress happening in Portland and Multnomah County, the All Hands Raised Partnership was selected by the Oregon Education Investment Board to serve as a mentor site among the network of 11 Regional Achievement Collaboratives. This recognition affirms the work of so many partners who have come together through the Partnership and helps to propel us forward in our efforts to collectively drive improvement on a defined set of shared outcomes.
A common thread that binds all of us together in this work is the focus on building stronger relationships between our community and our schools. On October 24th over 100 corporate, government, nonprofit and community leaders engaged with schools throughout Multnomah County as a part of Principal for Almost a Day.
Emi Donis, Vice President and Deputy General Counsel for Precision Castparts Corp., said it best when she noted, “Principals and corporate leaders have very similar goals – to ensure strong leadership, set the bar high and ensure quality standards are exceeded. There is a critical difference, however, in that at Precision Castparts these goals help us ensure we are building safe parts for airplanes; for schools and school leaders the ‘product’ is so much more critical and complex — educating our young people to achieve their full potential.”
We are determined to move from the excitement of engagement and visioning a plan, to deliberate implementation of action plans. This is where most big efforts fail and fold, not us, not now. Thank you for staying at the table.