What is your major question regarding community building? #EduCommunity Answers (Part 5 of 5)

Deborah Chang
#NYCEDU Stories
Published in
3 min readMar 20, 2018



Where do we start?

  • Where to start?
  • Where / How to start?
  • How do people at various stages of community-building figure out next steps?
  • A strategy for beginning the community building process — pitfalls and successes
  • Where, why do communities most often get ‘stuck’?
  • Many scattered ideas → in need of FOCUS
  • What is the scope of the vision?
  • How can I bring my vision to my local community?
  • What can I do tomorrow to deepen community relations in my school?

Who do we work with?

  • Need to understand my community BETTER
  • Who to talk to / bring to the table
  • Who to share my idea with and when?

How do we reach them?

  • How do you find diverse interested people?
  • Determining and approaching partners / members
  • Need to be associated with community leaders

How do we work together?

  • How do you build collaborative teams that push for greatness
  • I want to learn how to build CONSENT even without CONSENSUS around tough issues
  • How do you get everyone rowing in the same direction?
  • Getting stakeholders to take the next step
  • How do we include all stakeholders in creating results
  • DISTANCE — How to pull people together
  • How to build community investment and momentum? → More diverse stakeholders to the event
  • Bringing (ALL) education community stakeholders together to address local and meaningful needs

Especially when there’s need to build buy-in?

  • How can we pull people together who have been “assigned” to work together?
  • How do you encourage people who are uninterested?
  • How do you create buy-in from as much of your community as possible?
  • How to engage an apathetic, complacent, and/or entitled community to desire and hunger for innovation in schools
  • How to form communities in hostile political climates


What are tools and models for building community?

  • What are some successful tools, models, for building community?
  • What tools do you use in convening and activating the group
  • How to balance organic, grassroots development with framework and structure to support and advance

How do we build community online?

  • How to get more people engaged online
  • Need help with building Twitter community
  • Need tools for organizing and facilitating Twitter Chats

Get funded?

  • Funding a non-profit

Improve our events?

  • How to improve consistent engagement / attendance of meetups

Influence policy?

  • How can my community influence local and state school policy


How do I take care of myself?

  • How to focus your energy and time with so much work to be done
  • TIME — I need more
  • How to get the spark back

And what’s my own role?

  • Do I launch a new thing or join someone/thing that is doing similar things?
  • Do I launch this learning community on my own OR try to join existing versions?


How do we build community in education specifically?

  • How do we blur/remove boundaries on ACCESS to education
  • How might we better engage folks in my community around Education?
  • How to bring the community together on the issue of education in our community?
  • What are sys. barriers to innovation in education? AND where are those barriers already broken? ← schools, districts, communities

With parents?

  • Want to engage parent community in our brand new school from the beginning
  • How do you build a stronger, more engaged PTA?
  • How do I convince parents to make decisions that I can’t prove will help their kids?

With young people?

  • How can I motivate kids to take care of their education… not just feeling that mommy and daddy will take care of that… me
  • How do we encourage our students to reach out?
  • Access to students from a private company?

With technologists?

  • Ideas for engaging the tech sector in the training of welfare recipients to suit their tech needs

With educators?

  • How to engage more DIVERSE educators in mixed-group (educators, ed tech, entrepreneurs, etc.) community?



Deborah Chang
#NYCEDU Stories

Educator Entrepreneur and Community Builder: I Take Down Systemic Barriers to Education Innovation. Founder, #NYCEDU.