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Coming soon: a new mega-study on community schools and an award for NYC

Linda Darling-Hammond, president and CEO of the Learning Policy Institute
Linda Darling-Hammond, president and CEO of the Learning Policy Institute

New York City will receive an award Monday for its efforts to expand community schools, at the same time that a new study assessing the strategy is released.

The study from the Learning Policy Institute will summarize 125 other pieces of research about the approach, which floods schools with resources to meet their students’ personal needs, according to Linda Darling-Hammond, the think tank’s president and CEO.

Darling-Hammond — who is working with New York state on its plan to change the way it evaluates schools — previewed the study on Wednesday at the Education Writers Association conference in Washington, D.C.

She did not offer specifics about its findings. But the new study will join a growing body of research about community schools, which New York City has expanded sharply under Mayor Bill de Blasio.

Much of that research has suggested that the model helps students, but two recent studies offered more tepid results. Neither looked at New York City’s particular efforts, which researchers at the RAND Corporation are studying. Early results are expected in 2018.

City officials confirmed that Chris Caruso, who heads the Department of Education’s three-year-old community schools initiative, will accept the award.

In May, announcing an expansion of the program, de Blasio praised the city’s work thus far. “This is a model that is a game-changer,” he said. “New York City is starting to be the national leader because we’re going farther and faster than any school system.”

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