Any good educational institute provides children with a sense of purpose, caring for their emotional well-being as well as their education. Creating a school environment where children can thrive is important when building a successful, functional school community. Giving young people a space for healthy relationships with their peers and adults, as well as developing and nurturing their individual interests.
Skool Loop is a communication app that aims to help facilitate great operations within a school community. To do so we have looked at what makes a school community great, and how to strengthen your own school community.
What is a School Community?
A school community is the people, partnerships and resources in a school environment intended to support and create a space that nurtures growth in their pupils. There are many things that build a successful functioning school community. Schools can integrate events and resources into their school calendar. Helping to celebrate diversity, academic, sporting, cultural and extracurricular achievements. Integrating acknowledgement of these milestones boosts morale and makes individual pupils and family members feel valued by their community.
Engaged school communities tend to focus on the following:
The Importance of School Community Partnerships
To develop their community, many schools engage in partnerships with local businesses and initiatives. New Zealand schools often engage well with existing community initiatives such as tree planting, creative ways to help businesses, annual nationwide events such as the 48hr famine and much more. These initiatives can be student-led, but are developed through encouragement from teachers and having businesses actively engage with the school community. Developing local partnerships and internal partnerships also further builds a strong sense of school community.
Examples of Community Involvement in Schools
Community involvement in schools can be facilitated in different ways. Many businesses develop relationships with schools over time, where they will donate items (such as sausages for sausage sizzles) to the school. Knowing the parents in your own school community also further builds this involvement, parents will often be keen to know where they can fit to support their child’s school, and many parents are already involved with local businesses. Parents can help the school on local trips and parents who have unique jobs can often help to open up opportunities for ‘community experiences’ for students at the school. For example, visiting the local fire station or animal center.
Having a PTA that welcomes new parents, and is active in school decision-making further builds this active involvement in the school community. This also creates more intentionality in the school event planning and community achievements.
What makes a School Community great?
A great school community is built through great partnerships between the community members and the school. Where the students in the school are put first for their learning, emotional, physical, cultural and developmental needs, an active and supportive community will create this.