Children & Families

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One-Stop Schooling: Increasing the number of "community schools" throughout the country, and raising awareness about those full-service schools, are the goals of a national three-year campaign of public-service announcements.

The campaign announced late last month is co-sponsored by the New York City-based Children's Aid Society, the Coalition for Community Schools, in Washington, and the Advertising Council, a New York City-based nonprofit organization backed by the advertising industry. The effort includes ads for television, radio, and print media.

Community schools offer programs that fit the needs of their communities. Common features include staying open 15 hours a day; offering medical, dental, and social services; providing early-childhood education and adult education programs; and offering a variety of academic, recreational, and cultural opportunities.

Parents who call (877)-LOVE-2 LEARN when they see one of the ads will receive a booklet listing 10 steps they can take to promote community schools. Educators and policymakers who call the toll-free number will get a more detailed manual about how to get started.

The Children's Aid Society, a child-welfare agency, has been a leader in the community schools movement and has worked with the New York City board of education to open eight such schools since 1992. The schools involved report improved academic performance, better attendance and student health, and greater parent involvement.

Tapes on Tots: Hispanic parents will soon be able to benefit from a series of videos about early-childhood development.

The videos, part of the St. Louis-based Parents as Teachers program, will be translated into Spanish with funding from the McCormick Tribune Foundation.

The series of 16 videos, called "Born to Learn," features pediatricians, neuroscientists, and experts on early-childhood education who talk about brain development during the early years and what parents can do enhance their children's growth.

Parents as Teachers, an early-childhood parent education and home-visiting program, developed the video in 1997 and has distributed copies to thousands of parents. PAT parent educators discuss the videos with parents during their visits.

Based in Chicago, the McCormick Tribune Foundation paid for the original English version of the video series.

Parents as Teachers began in Missouri 15 years ago and now works with districts to serve families in 49 states and six foreign countries.

—Linda Jacobson

Vol. 19, Issue 40, Page 5

Published in Print: June 14, 2000, as Children & Families

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