School-community partnership : a capital idea for school improvement
A new national initiative, the Schools First Awards, aims to build stronger partnerships between schools and individuals, local businesses and community organisations by providing local, state and national awards to schools to the value of $15 million over the next three years. Research shows that strong partnerships between schools and local business and community organisations can make a significant difference to outcomes for young people. The positive outcomes include increased skills, greater engagement with learning, more positive attitudes and improved transitions into the workforce, further education or training. In particular, effective school-community partnership give schools a much broader range of resources and support networks on which to draw. Under the Schools First initiative, any primary or secondary school that develops effective partnerships will be eligible for one of up to 60 local awards, eight state/territory awards, and one national award. Through the financial incentives, targeted workshops and an online collection of case studies and relate research, Schools First is intended to encourage and inspire the development of social capital, school improvement, and the creativity and excellence. [Author abstract, ed]
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