Leadership in Community Schools

The Leadership in Community Schools Program is a School-based Program of Study. You must be accepted first to SSA and then by the Program of Study. SSA students apply to Programs of Study during the fall quarter of their first year.

The Leadership in Community Schools Program and Curriculum

A Community School is both a place and a set of partnerships between the school and other community resources and nonprofits. Its integrated focus on academics, services, supports and enrichment opportunities leads to improved student learning, stronger families and healthier communities.

The Leadership in Community Schools Program, which serves as a complement to the School Social Work Program, is intended to educate social workers for new roles in urban schools, and more specifically, in the Community Schools model. Through a placement in an urban public community school setting, students develop the competencies necessary to work on many levels within a school, developing effective after-school and youth development programs, fostering effective family-school-community partnerships, and developing school communities that promote the physical and mental health, emotional and social development, and educational development of youth.

The Leadership in Community Schools Program is designed for students in the Social Administration concentration. Students are required to take three specialized courses which specifically focus on public schools and urban education.

This program has been made possible, in part, through a gift from The James and Judith K. Dimon Foundation.

Field Placement

Fieldwork is a critical component of each of the School-based Programs. Students work in a variety of urban and suburban settings and have opportunities to develop relationships with students, families, school staff and the community-at-large. The scope of work may include working directly with children, collaborating with teachers, developing systems of support that impact school structures, and connecting the school with local resources to promote academic success as well as healthy social and emotional development.

Career Opportunities

SSA alumni are at the forefront of education. With strong problem solving, multidisciplinary, and interpersonal skills, they are working at the intersection of social work and education at a variety of practice and policy levels. Our alumni work in both practice and policy positions in public schools, private schools, and community schools.

Alumni of SSA’s School-based Programs are uniquely prepared to promote student learning and well-being, address academic and non-academic barriers to learning, develop comprehensive and cohesive academic and social supports, and understand and apply diverse frameworks for evidence-based practice and program development.

Contact Information

Deborah McGarvey
Director, Leadership in Community Schools Program