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Ready News: August 24, 2012

Ready News
August 24, 2012

Inspiration for Ready by 21 Teams, Training on Collective Impact


Why a Ready by 21 Team Jumped for Leap of Reason   
About a year ago, I was invited to Washington to hear someone discuss his book about how leaders can work together better to achieve community change. I expected to be enlightened; I didn't expect to come home with copies of a book that so reinforced our collective impact work that it became almost required reading for our Ready by 21 team in Atlanta.
Mario Marino's Leap of Reason spoke directly to our vision and our challenges. You'll soon see why.

Read more of this blog by Brad Bryant, co-chair of Atlanta's Ready by 21 Leadership Council.

Ready by 21 Webinar Series 
Leading the Leaders: What It Takes to Build an Overarching Leadership Council

With various people and organizations playing unique roles in your community - focusing on particular issues, populations and geographic areas - someone needs to keep an eye on the big picture, connect the work of those groups and make sure there are no gaps. That's why every successful Ready by 21 state and community has an overarching leadership council.

In this webinar, you'll hear how the Forum has worked with states and communities to establish effective leadership councils. We'll explore best practices to help you in forming and sustaining your leadership council, including a hands-on self-assessment tool.

Host: The Forum for Youth Investment
When: Aug. 28, 3 p.m. ET
Register here. 

Thinking Outside the Box: Creating Catalytic Partnerships to Change the Odds for Children and Youth

Karen Pittman, president and CEO of the Forum for Youth Investment, challenged Chattanooga, Tenn., to come together as a community to change the way it serves and supports young people. In this speech and accompanying graphics, she describes the dynamic potential of catalytic partnerships.

Karen encourages Ready by 21 leaders to create a "catalytic partnership to ensure that all of the community's resources, not just the schools, have assumed shared responsibility for student success." She reminds leaders that they can change the way they do business and that partnerships are key.



(Leader Network Registration Required)


College Access and K-12 Reform: Are We There Yet?
Many communities have invested in programs, strategies and interventions to keep kids in school, improve their grades and ensure their graduation. These are noble efforts, but in this blog, Anderson Williams of the Tennessee College Access and Success Network - a partner in the Ready by 21, Credentialed by 26 initiative - argues that none of them has transformed K-12 education enough to improve access to college.

What Americans Think About Public Schools
Is balancing the federal budget more important than improving education? Should schools punish bullying that occurs away from school? Those are among the questions asked in the 44th annual PDK/Gallup Poll of the Public's Attitudes Toward the Public Schools, and the answers show a nation divided. Read the summary here. Gallup is a Ready by 21 National Partner.

Expanded Learning: What Research Says
If your community is looking at Expanding Learning Time, you'll want to read Expanding Time for Learning Both Inside and Outside the Classroom: A Review of the Evidence Base. The report - commissioned by The Wallace Foundation and produced by Child Trends - examines 80 evaluation of initiatives that either lengthen the school day or year, or that offer learning opportunities outside of school hours. Bottom line: There are few rigorous evaluations, but the scant evidence suggests that extending school time can help raise academic achievement, while out-of-school opportunities can boost "precursors" to achievement, such as educational expectations.
Progress in Juvenile Justice
A report by the National Conference of State Legislatures details progress in state and national juvenile justice policies over the past 11 years. Reclaiming Futures summarizes and links to Trends in Juvenile Justice State Legislation: 2001-2011.

Very Best in Youth
These Nestlé USA grants honor young people (13 to 18) who have excelled in school and who are making their community and the world a better place. Maximum award: $1,000. Deadline: Nov. 8. Find out more here.
Grassroots Organizing for Social Change
This Ben & Jerry's Foundation grant seeks to promote social justice, protect the environment and support sustainable food systems. Funds are provided to grassroots, constituent-led organizations that use community organizing strategies to accomplish their goals and to organizations that provide technical support and resources to such groups. Maximum grant: $15,000. Deadline: Rolling. Find out more here.

Do Something Grand
This Generations United campaign encourages intergenerational activism to commemorate Grandparents Day (Sept. 9). Organizations around the country are planning activities for that week.

When: Sept. 8-15
Find out more here.

Achieving Collective Impact: How Partnerships Change Community Outcomes
People working to create lasting, community-wide change have a new opportunity for learning the best strategies: The Forum for Youth Investment and United Way Worldwide are presenting a three-day institute designed to accelerate the work of collaborative partnerships.

Achieving Collective Impact: How Partnerships Change Community Outcomes is built around the 10 key steps to achieving measureable outcomes, such as problem analysis, intervention design, implementation, evaluation and improvement. Participants will learn how to take a big picture approach to tackle underlying issues in their communities. See what action planning looks like when many organizations share responsibility for results.

When: Sept. 11-13
Where: United Way Worldwide, Alexandria, Va.
Find out more and register here.

Strengthening Citywide After-School Opportunities: New Insights, New Tools
Looking to implement a management information system for after school or summer but don't know where to begin or what questions to ask? This session introduces National League of Cities' (NLC) new in-depth report comparing major data system vendors and offers guidance from The Wallace Foundation's recently released data tip sheets. Representatives from leading cities will be on hand to answer questions and advise on how to replicate successful strategies from around the country.

This is the second in a free, three-part webinar series - brought to you by The Forum for Youth Investment in partnership with the Wallace Foundation, the NLC and Collaborative for Building After-School Systems - to share a new suite of tools commissioned by the foundation.

When: Sept. 18, 1 p.m. ET
Register here.

Bridging the Achievement Gap Through School/Community Partnerships
The Communities for Change National Leadership Symposium brings together education, nonprofit, foundation and public sector leaders seeking to better align resources with results. Topics include how school districts and community programs can effectively share data, assessing student needs outside the classroom, and multi-agency data management, reporting and collective impact. The event is hosted by hosted by nFocus Solutions in partnership with Search Institute, both of which are Ready by 21 National Partners.

When: Oct. 10-11
Where: Houston, Texas
Learn more here.
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