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NEA Issue Explainer

Community Schools

Full-service community schools meet students’ academic and enrichment needs by recognizing that many students are coping with serious issues that affect their ability to learn and thrive in the classroom.
Published: December 2, 2021
This issue explainer originally appeared on

Federal legislation can help expand the full-service public community school model, which features high-quality teaching and learning, family and community partnerships, community school coordinators, and a full suite of support services for students and families, such as health and nutrition services and mentoring programs.

Community schools fit each neighborhood’s unique needs—from offering food pantries to providing mental health counseling—and offer strategies designed to meet challenges identified by educators, students, families, local organizations, and social service agencies.

Dig Deeper

happy student in classroom

What are Community Schools?

Community Schools mobilize students, families, educators, and community members to develop a grassroots vision for their schools and communities, and they work together to achieve their vision.
students and staff distribute food at a community school

New Federal Bill Promotes Public Schools as Community Hubs

Integrated academic, health, nutrition, and economic services will transform outcomes for all students.
AA teacher

How Community Schools Reduce Crushing Educator Workload

The community schools model enlists local partners to provide enrichment and other student services, taking pressure off educators.

Ready, Set, Grow!

SDEA provides high-quality professional learning to improve your professional practice, support student success and excellence, and build community with other members across South Dakota.
A family sits with a small child looking over their homework.

Learning happens at home, in school, and everywhere in between.

We all have a role to play in supporting student learning. Check out resources for parents & families to support learning.

It's about our kids.

The South Dakota Education Association (SDEA) is a professional organization working hard for educators, so they can continue to work hard for our kids. SDEA members provide a wide range of professional education services in communities throughout the state.