Photo: Elliot Haney
Jim Balfanz
May 1, 2018 · 2 min read

This month, we are launching the District Learning Network, a new initiative to bring cohorts of senior leaders from City Year’s partner school districts across the country together as a learning community.

We are fortunate to work so closely with school and district partners who are leading the way in developing and refining strategies for improving outcomes for all students. We have heard directly from our partners that they are looking for opportunities to connect with their peers across the country, and we believe that City Year’s national network — 327 high-need schools in 28 U.S. cities — presents a unique opportunity to build a community of leaders who can learn from one another.

Through the District Learning Network, City Year strives to convene a learning community where school system leaders can build community, share best practices in addressing common challenges, and develop action plans to help accelerate school improvement. Eight districts have joined the inaugural cohort of our District Learning Network, with senior leaders from each coming together to discuss and develop solutions towards a shared problem of practice, including how school systems can leverage service providers to achieve meaningful social-emotional and academic development for all students.

We welcome the following senior leaders into the District Learning Network for the 2018–2019 school year:

  • Tonya Adair, Chief Innovation Officer, Milwaukee Public Schools (WI)
  • Hilaria Bauer, Superintendent, Alum Rock School District (CA)
  • Marvin Burton, Associate Superintendent for High Schools, Little Rock School District (AR)
  • Rodney Harrelson, Chief Innovation and Improvement Officer, Columbus City Schools (OH)
  • Doug Huscher, Assistant Superintendent of Student Support Services, Sacramento City Unified School District (CA)
  • Jeff Rhodes, Assistant Superintendent, School District of Philadelphia (PA)
  • Quentina Timoll, Assistant Superintendent, East Baton Rouge Parish Schools (LA)
  • Iranetta Wright, Deputy Superintendent of Schools, Detroit Public Schools Community District (MI)

We’re grateful to these extraordinary leaders from across City Year’s national network for their commitment to improving outcomes for all students, partnership with us and for their participation in the District Learning Network. As this community comes together throughout the year to collaborate, problem solve and innovate, we hope to share out insights and lessons on what works for students more broadly.

One of City Year’s core values is, “Students first, collaboration always.” We know that it will take all of us working together to ensure that every student is provided with the support they need to succeed. I can’t imagine a better group to collaborate with than this group of dedicated school and district partners, and I look forward to continuing this work together.

Jim Balfanz

Written by

President of @CityYear - Committed to creating learning environments where all students can build on their strengths and fully engage in their learning.

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