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Ready News: January 9, 2014

Ready News
January 9, 2014

A Look Back at 2013


Great Stories and Ideas from 2013

As we start the new year, let's look back on some stories and ideas about how people around the country are working to improve the odds for children and youth.

 Stories of Impact              

Youth Voices Spur Community Action              

While community leaders have lots of statistics about young people as students - such as test scores and graduation rates - they typically have little data to answer the bigger question: "How are young people doing overall?" In the small city of Indianola, Miss., that's changing.


Indianola leaders are using local data in new ways to get a more complete picture of their young people, to listen to their concerns and to take action. That data - including new details from a student poll - have spurred a series of community conversations among government leaders, educators, business people, parents and youth. Read on to find out more about the data and conversations that are leading this small town to make big changes.


Collaboration Builds a NEST for Homeless Youth

For years, community leaders in Georgetown, Texas, searched for ways to provide a special place for homeless and transitioning teens - a place to get a meal, to find a mentor, to get some sleep. Today young people get all that and more at The NEST, an idea that became a reality through a community collaboration's smart use of data, communications and shared goals.  


The NEST (Nurturing, Empowering, Supporting for Tomorrow) is no standard drop-in shelter. Find out about what it does and how leaders made it happen in this 600-word story


New Type of Student Poll Takes Schools Beyond Academics

When school leaders in one Northern Kentucky community saw the results of an enhanced version of the Gallup Student Poll, they were struck to find that many middle schoolers did not have high hopes about their futures. School officials saw that they needed to nurture and engage middle schoolers beyond the classroom - and worked with community partners to create new afterschool programming to address that need. This short story explains the enhanced poll and how one school district used the results.


Harnessing Collective Impact to Prevent Teen Pregnancy

Collective impact is gaining interest across the country as an innovative strategy to solve complex problems that cannot be addressed by individual organizations working in isolation. Can this strategy even help us combat teen pregnancy? Georgia says yes, and is leading the way in showing us how.


Over the past two years, private organizations and public agencies throughout Georgia have been aligning their work under a common framework to make systemic changes in how we do business for young people. As a result, more young people have access to pregnancy prevention programs built on evidence-based practices that work. See more of this blog by Kim Nolte of the Georgia Campaign for Adolescent Power and Potential. 


Richard Murphy's Impact             

Feb. 14, 2013, brought the sad passing of Richard Murphy, an innovator in American youth work. It was 23 years to the date that New York Mayor David Dinkins signed the agreement to launch the Beacon Schools, which Richard created. His friend Karen Pittman, CEO of the Forum for Youth Investment, reflects on a life well lived.


Alternative ABCs

An increasing number of schools use Early Warning Systems to monitor student data on attendance, behavior and course performance, and to trigger reviews for students who reach red flag levels. What if we combined such education indicators with youth development indicators to create a holistic early warning system? Karen Pittman seeks answers in this blog, and invites your thoughts.
 Ready by 21 National Meeting
Join hundreds of leaders from across the country who are dedicated to improving the odds for children and youth through collective impact initiatives, policy alignment and program quality improvement.

Find out more - including a new summary of what the meeting will focus on and what topics will be covered. 



Connect With Us

Are you doing great work in your community? Have you used the Ready by 21 Tools to achieve success? Let us know by sharing your story on the Leader Network. It could be featured on the website and this newsletter!



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