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Community schools families and communities at the heart of school life

Recommendations

To realise the vision for effective community schools in Wales in a strategic and sustainable way:

Schools should:

  • R1 Build strong partnerships with families as an integral part of improving the wellbeing and achievement of all pupils
  • R2 Refer clearly in strategic plans to how they will work with families, the community and partners to improve the wellbeing and achievement of all pupils
  • R3 Employ family and community engagement staff to work with families, the community and wider partners
  • R4 Work with the local authority and with statutory and third-sector partners to provide services that address the needs of families and the community, including co-locating services and utilising school assets
  • R5 Evaluate the impact of community school strategies

Local authorities should:

  • R6 Include in strategic planning actions on how they will develop authority-wide initiatives to support schools to be effective community schools
  • R7 Strengthen cross-directorate working to plan ways of locating a range of services in schools
  • R8 Ensure that 21st Century Schools planning considers the need for spaces / base rooms for family and community access
  • R9 Support schools to appoint family and community engagement staff, including developing a role description for these staff
  • R10 Provide professional learning opportunities for support school staff, governing bodies and strategic partners to develop community schools

The Welsh Government should:

  • R11 Develop a set of agreed, defining characteristics for community schools, and consider how schools are classified as ‘community schools’ and how this term is used to identify specific schools
  • R12 Promote the benefits of community schools, particularly in areas of disadvantage, with schools, local authorities and regional consortia
  • R13 Strengthen the expectation for including actions on family and community engagement in school strategic plans
  • R14 Refresh national guidance on community schools, using the Family and Community Engagement Toolkit (FaCE), and provide guidance on how schools can evaluate and improve their community school strategies
  • R15 Ensure that 21st Century Schools and Colleges Programme planning, guidance and building standards take into consideration the need for spaces for family and community access

https://www.estyn.gov.wales/sites/www.estyn.gov.wales/files/documents/Community%20Schools%20en.pdf