UCF Distinguished Lecture Series featuring Jane Quinn- by Frank Gummey

The second installment of the University of Central Florida’s (UCF) Distinguished Urban & Regional Planning Lecture Series of the 2014-15 Fall-Spring scholastic year featured Jane Quinn of The Children’s Aid Society and the current director of the National Center for Community Schools.  She began the presentation by asserting that there are many different models and ways to develop community school.  Her position tasks her to approve all the Community School designs and concepts.  One example of a common arrangement of a community school is to have half of the building act as a public school for children while the other half addresses needs, such as medical care, child care and adult education.  The community school movement flourished in the state of New York and has since spread across the country.  Support for community schools originated from mostly private sources but the success of the concept has attracted substantial public funds.

20150205_191440 copyWhen Evans Community School opened in the Parramore neighborhood of Orlando, organizers took into consideration the needs of the community and other strategies that have worked in other areas.  The UCF College of Health and Public Affairs (COHPA) worked alongside Parramore students and residents for the past seven years.  The after school program has become popular with many students for additional learning.  UCF student Marklyne Joachim was the President of the Student Leadership Council at Evans Community and decided to go to UCF after graduation.  While she is glad she has taken the opportunity to serve and give back to her neighborhood, she still realizes that there are steps to be made to unite the community.  Dean Frumkin of COHPA believes that “social entrepreneurship” will help Evans Community School continue to thrive for years to come.

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