Starting a New Site

Steps to Establishing a Community School 

  1. Take a comprehensive approach to community schools: All four pillars— integrated student supports, expanded learning time and opportunities, family and community engagement, and collaborative leadership and practices—matter; moreover, they appear to reinforce each other. 
  2. Develop a plan that operationalizes the four pillars in ways that address local assets and needs, keeping in mind that the context of schools and communities may change over time. 
  3. Key: Provide sufficient planning time to build trusting relationships between the school and an array of service providers as well as parents and staff, being mindful that such collaboration is key to full implementation. 
  4. Involve the community, parents, and young people as part of the needs assessment, design, planning, and implementation processes. ESSA requires it, and, in the case of community schools, such collaborative relationships are part of what will make the strategy successful. 
  5. Use evaluation strategies that provide information not only about progress toward hoped-for outcomes, but also about implementation and exposure to services. Be aware that outcomes are likely to span multiple domains—achievement, attendance, behavior, relationships, and attitudes—and are likely to take time to be fully realized. Certain outcomes, such as attendance, are likely to be achieved before other outcomes, such as achievement. Use data for continuous program refinement, while allowing sufficient time for the strategy to fully mature. 

OCSN FAQs for School Administrators

What training is involved for the candidate?

  • They will have a week of on onboarding in earlyAugust.
  • 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 some of the main things they need to have completed or learned when they first get started. 

What training might we need to best support this role?

  • To get an idea of what we provide for Coordinators when they start, you can review the New School Onboarding Manual. I would especially encourage you to review 
    • page 8 (principal responsibilities) and 
    • 10 (things your coordinator will need to know and have.) But I appreciate this question! So I will let you know if anything comes to mind. 
  • 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 also welcome to attend any relevant PD That is offered in the school, and are encouraged to.

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

  • OCSN Coordinators work year round with 20 flexible vacation days, which is intended to be used during the school summer break.  We encourage them to try to only take time off during the school breaks, but if they have something during the year that they need to take time they will pull from these 20 days. 
  • They get holidays that are off for their school system and the school's Christmas break and spring break are also vacation days for Coordinators
  • They also have 5 sicks days

What are the hours for the position?

  • They work whatever hours the school staff work.
  • They are able to bank and use some flex time for long hours they may work in the evening.

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

  • They will request it from both OCSN administration and the principal. 
  • 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 tracks all of that information. 

If we have questions (as principals), who is our contact person? 

  • Contact Caroline or Angela.  They work closely together and either can answer questions.  
    • Caroline  cgeist@oaisd.org
    • Angela adershem@oaisd.org

Each Coordinator has a designated Supervisor. Currently this looks like:

  • Angela Supervises Coordinators in 
    • Allendale
    • Coopersville
    • Hudsonville
    • Zeeland
  • Caroline supervises Coordinators in 
    • Holland
    • Hamilton

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

***OCSN will provide their laptop and printer

  • 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 New School Checklist

 OCSN School Checklist

When A coordinator Gets Started in the Building 

  • THINGS YOUR COORDINATOR WILL NEED TO KNOW:  
  • SCHOOL PRIORITIES (coordinator will need to complete a Priority Survey/ Needs assessment. They will need help collecting the data)
  • SCHOOL CALENDAR
  • SCHOOL SAFETY PROTOCOLS
  • MEETINGS THE COORDINATOR WILL BE A PART OF AND WHEN: 
    •  PBIS Meetings
    •  Student Behavior Meetings
    • School Improvement Team Meetings  
    •  Monthly Meetings with administration 
    • Others  

THINGS YOUR COORDINATOR WILL NEED TO HAVE:  

(Have this ready for your first meeting with them.)

  • PHONE
  • BUILDING ACCESS  
  • REPORTING EXPECTATIONS  RESERVATION OF ROOMS/SPACE 
  • OFFICE SUPPLIES
  •  WIRELESS ACCESS  
  • ACCESS TO DATA   
  • LIST OF GROUPS/MEETINGS 
  • MENTOR FOR THE COORDINATOR (Who can they ask questions to?)