Starting a New Site - School Administrator Toolkit - Ottawa Community Schools Network

Starting a New Site

Onboarding Timeline for New OCSN Sites: 


Applications due back from the school. 


OCSN Administration set up in-person school visits with school administration. 

We view the school visit as an important component of OCSN expansion process. It gives us a chance to get to know the school and their needs and vision better. It also gives schools a chance to ask us questions about the OCSN or anything else they may be wondering about. 


OCSN Administration will collaborate with a key team of individuals (admin, counselors, social workers, etc) from the school to talk more in depth about the Coordinator's position and how to best integrate them into the school. 

The school administration completes an application assessing needs, readiness, and support for coordinator, and alignment of visions.You may also contact Caroline Geist at if you have any questions. 

Google FormsOCSN New Site Application

What are the building administrator’s  responsibilities?

  • Provide building access for the coordinator (including summer months)
  • Provide a dedicated office space for the community school coordinator with: (See checklist below)
    • Phone line
    • Wi-fi access
    • Locking file cabinet
  • Coordinate access to student management system (PowerSchool, Infinite Campus)
  • Dedicate time periodically in staff meetings for OCSN updates
  • Communicate and/or meet regularly with coordinator (minimum monthly)
  • Participates regularly in Community School Leadership Team Meetings (year 2)
  • Provide feedback and meet to discuss annual performance evaluation with Coordinator and OCSN administrator
  • Annually assist coordinator in completing OCSN priority survey/needs assessment
  • Assist Coordinator in navigating and accessing district systems and departments. Help in completing needs assessment/Priority Survey.

What training is provided for the Coordinator by OCSN?

  • They will have a week of onboarding in early August with OCSN Administration and other new hires.
  • You can see here an example of a previous year's onboarding agenda to see the type of content we cover with the Coordinator. 
  • We provide new Coordinators with a 90 Day Plan which helps guide them in the important things to do and learn when they first get started. 
  • Coordinators will attend a monthly OCSN team meeting.
  • Coordinators will receive once or twice a month supervision from their assigned OCSN supervisor. 

What training and information might school administrators need to best understand and support the program and Coordinator?

  • To get an idea of what we provide for Coordinators when they start, you can review the New School Onboarding Manual. We would especially encourage you to review the following pages:
    • Page 8- principal responsibilities 
    • Page 10-things your coordinator will need to know and have.
  • We also ask that you set aside some time at one of the beginning of the year staff PDs or meetings for the Coordinator to explain their role and the community school model. 
  • Coordinators are encouraged to attend any relevant PD that is offered in the school.

Will they follow our school calendar to define their work days?

  • Yes and No.  Supporting the Community School model requires a year-round flexible schedule that includes off site and community-based work and meetings in addition to time in school buildings.
  • OCSN Coordinators work year round with 20 flexible vacation days, which are intended to be used during the school summer break.  We encourage them to try to only take time off during the school breaks,
  • It has always been the intent of OCSN that community school coordinators are in their buildings when school is in session and when staff are expected to report. However, if staff chooses to take vacation time outside the regular school calendar breaks, that time will be deducted from their Summer Break/PTO accrual. 
  • OCSN Coordinators are provided the option to utilize flex time to be used during the pay period it was accrued, with pre-approval. Flex Time is an arrangement that allows employees to alter the start and end times of their work day/work week outside the normal weekly work schedule.
  • Summer break vacation time and work schedule must be approved by building principal(s) and communicated to the OCSN Director and OCSN Program Manager via the Summertime PTO Request form before the end of each school year.
  • While staff have the option to work off site when it supports their role, staff are not allowed to work off site without pre approval from principals and OCSN administrative staff and must provide an explanation of the projects that will be worked on. Staff who are unable to be in their schools due to illness may not count unrequested work time from home.
  • Each OCSN employee is granted five sick days per fiscal year beginning each year on September 1.  Any unused sick days may not be carried forward from one fiscal year to another.

What are the work hours for the position?

  • OCSN Coordinators are expected to work 8 hour days that reflect whatever hours the school administration work. 
  • They are able to bank and use flex time for long hours they may work in the evening or on weekends. This flex time must be used within the pay period it was accrued and cannot be saved or banked.

What is the process for them to request time off (personal day/sick time)? 

  • OCSN Coordinators are expected to communicate with BOTH their building principal and OCSN supervisor when they plan to be out of the building and receive pre-approval for all scheduled absences.
  • We always tell them to check with the principals first to make sure they wouldn't be missing anything important that they need to be at. 
  • OCSN admin and the United Way tracks all of sick and PTO time for OCSN Employees. 

What about Holidays,PD Days, and Snow Days?

  • OCSN Community School Coordinators are expected to check with their building principals when school is closed due to inclement weather, such as snow. If the principal wants the Coordinator to report to the building, s/he must do so. If the principal does not need the Coordinator to report, s/he is expected to work from home. If the Coordinator chooses not to work from home, PTO must be used. 
  • OCSN Coordinators are not expected to report on any federal holidays that their school system also has off, and also have the school's Christmas break and spring break off.
  • OCSN Community School Coordinators are expected to report to their school buildings on school and district professional development days (whether half days or full days) if school staff is expected to report.

How is a Community School Coordinator different from a School Social Worker and a Mental Health Clinician?

role clarification


  • SCHOOL PRIORITIES (coordinator will need to complete a Priority Survey/ Needs assessment. They will need help collecting the data)
    •  PBIS Meetings
    •  Student Behavior Meetings
    • School Improvement Team Meetings  
    •  Monthly Meetings with administration 
    • Others  


To equip the Coordinator for success in your building, please plan to have the following ready for them when they start.

  • Office space identified
  • School email set up (they will also have an email through the OAISD but we will merge the two)
  • Building Key Card
  • Phone line set up
  • Locking filing cabinet
  • Infinite campus login
  • Access to basic office supplies
  • Access to Wi-fi

***OCSN will provide their laptop and printer