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Budget Tools

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This section explores budget tools that aid the process of identifying resources, funding gaps, projected costs and fiscal mapping for community schools and related initiatives. The information …

This section explores budget tools that aid the process of identifying resources, funding gaps, projected costs and fiscal mapping for community schools and related initiatives. The information underscored in this content area includes the purpose, use, and promising practices for budgeting.

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  • 1. A RESOURCE GUIDE FORUNDERSTANDING COMMUNITY SCHOOLS Using Budget Tools at Community Schools October 2012 Prepared by: Iris Hemmerich Urban Strategies Council
  • 2. Using Budget Tools at Community SchoolsTable of ContentsA Resource Guide for Understanding Community Schools .......................................................................... 2 Updating the Resource Guide ................................................................................................................... 4 Additional Community School Resources ................................................................................................. 4Our Community School work with Oakland Unified School District ............................................................. 5Community School Budget Tools: Literature Review ................................................................................... 6 Introduction .............................................................................................................................................. 6 Review ....................................................................................................................................................... 6 1. Purpose and Use of the Budget Tools ........................................................................................... 6 2. Long vs. Short Term Fiscal Mapping ............................................................................................. 7 3. Promising Practices ....................................................................................................................... 7 Conclusion ................................................................................................................................................. 7Community School Budget Tools: Annotated Bibliography.......................................................................... 8 1 ©Urban Strategies Council, October 2012
  • 3. A Resource Guide for Understanding Community SchoolsINTRODUCTIONUrban Strategies Council has collected and reviewed more than 175 evaluations, case studies,briefs and reports for use by those considering or planning a community school or communityschool district. Our intention is to provide interested individuals and stakeholders theresources they need to better understand the unique structure and core components ofcommunity schools. The promising practices, recommendations, tools and information sharedin this document have been culled from documents representing the last 20 years of researchand documentation of community schools across the United States.We highlighted 11 content areas that we believe to be the most foundational for understandingcommunity schools. Within each of the content areas, you will find: 1. A literature review: The literature reviews for each content area are organized around core questions and provide a synthesis of the most commonly identified solutions and responses to each question, as well as highlights, promising practices, challenges and recommendations. 2. An annotated bibliography: We gathered and annotated literature in each of the content areas to underscore key themes, some of which include: best practices, exemplary sites, models and tools. The annotations vary by content area in order to draw attention to the most pertinent information. For example, the Evaluations content area includes annotations of the evaluation methodology and indicators of success.The 11 content areas include the following: 1. Community School Characteristics Provides a general overview of the structure, function, core elements, programs and services of a community school. 2. Planning and Design Explores the general planning and design structures for community schools, and discusses the initial steps and central components of the planning and design process, as well as strategies for scaling up community schools. 3. Equity Frameworks and Tools Examines literature and tools that can be adapted to an equity framework for community schools. We included equity frameworks and tools that explore disproportionality and the monitoring of disparities and demographic shifts. 2 ©Urban Strategies Council, October 2012
  • 4. 4. Collaborative Leadership Addresses how to build, strengthen and expand the collaborative leadership structure at community schools. Collaborative leadership is a unique governance structure that brings together community partners and stakeholders to coordinate a range of services and opportunities for youth, families and the community.5. Family and Community Engagement Explores how community and family engagement operates as well as the challenges for actualizing it at the site level. Family and community engagement is a unique component of community schools in which the school, families, and community actively work together to create networks of shared responsibility for student success.6. Data Collection and Analysis Addresses the outcomes measured at community schools, methods for collecting data at community schools, and short and long term indicators.7. Assessment Tools Includes tools used to measure outcomes at community schools.8. Community School Evaluations Provides evaluations of community school initiatives with special attention paid to methodology, indicators of success, findings and challenges.9. Community School Funding Explores how to leverage revenue streams and allocate resources at community schools.10. Budget Tools Includes tools that support the process of budgeting and fiscal mapping.11. Community School Sustainability Explores promising practices for creating sustainability plans, partnership development and leveraging resources for the future. 3 ©Urban Strategies Council, October 2012
  • 5. UPDATING THE RESOURCE GUIDEUrban Strategies Council will continue its efforts to update the Resource Guide with the mostcurrent information as it becomes available. If you know of topics or resources that are notcurrently included in this guide, please contact Alison Feldman, Education Excellence Program,at alisonf@urbanstrategies.org. We welcome your ideas and feedback for A Resource Guide forUnderstanding Community Schools.ADDITIONAL COMMUNITY SCHOOL RESOURCESNational:The Coalition for Community Schoolshttp://www.communityschools.org/The National Center for Community Schools (Children’s Aid Society)http://nationalcenterforcommunityschools.childrensaidsociety.org/Yale University Center in Child Development and Social Policyhttp://www.yale.edu/21c/training.htmlRegional:The Center for Community School Partnerships, UC Davishttp://education.ucdavis.edu/community-school-partnershipsCenter for Strategic Community Innovationhttp://cscinnovation.org/community-schools-project/about-cscis-community-schools-project/community-school-initiative-services-coaching-and-ta/’ 4 ©Urban Strategies Council, October 2012
  • 6. Our Community School work with Oakland Unified School DistrictUrban Strategies Council has a long history of working with the Oakland Unified School District(OUSD) to support planning for improved academic achievement. Most recently, we helpeddevelop and support the implementation of OUSD’s five-year strategic plan, CommunitySchools, Thriving Students. Adopted by the Board of Education in June 2011, the plan calls forbuilding community schools across the district that ensure high-quality instruction; developsocial, emotional and physical health; and create equitable opportunities for learning. UrbanStrategies Council has worked with the school district, community members and otherstakeholders to support this system reform in several ways: Community Schools Strategic Planning: Urban Strategies Council facilitated six School Board retreats over a 14-month period to help develop the strategic plan. As part of that process, the District created 14 task forces to produce recommendations for the plan, with Urban Strategies Council facilitating one task force and sitting on several others. Full Service Community Schools Task Force: Urban Strategies Council convened and co- facilitated the Full Service Community Schools and District Task Force, which created a structural framework and tools for planning and implementation, and produced a report with a set of recommendations that formed the foundation of the strategic plan. Community Engagement in Planning: Urban Strategies Council partnered with the district to educate and engage more than 900 school and community stakeholders on how community schools could best serve them. Planning for Community Schools Leadership Council: Urban Strategies Council has been working with OUSD’s Department of Family, School and Community Partnerships to lay the groundwork for building an interagency, cross-sector partnership body that will provide high-level system oversight and support, and ensure shared responsibility and coordination of resources towards the vision of healthy, thriving children supported through community schools. Convening Workgroups: Urban Strategies Council continues to partner with the District to convene and facilitate several workgroups developing specific structures, processes, and practices supporting community school implementation, as well as informing the eventual work of the Community Schools Leadership Council. African American Male Achievement Initiative: Urban Strategies Council is a partner in OUSD’s African American Male Achievement Initiative (AAMAI), a collaboration supporting efforts to close the achievement gap and improve other key outcomes for African American males in OUSD. Urban Strategies Council has developed data-based research; explored promising practices, programs and policies inside and outside the school district; analyzed the impact of existing system-wide policies; and developed policy recommendations to improve outcomes in various areas identified by the AAMAI Task Force. Boys and Men of Color: Urban Strategies Council is the Regional Convener for the Oakland Boys and Men of Color site, which adopted community schools as a vehicle to improve health, education and employment outcomes for boys and men of color. 5 ©Urban Strategies Council, October 2012
  • 7. Community School Budget Tools: Literature ReviewIntroductionBudgeting is an important component of community school planning because it helps clarify thefiscal needs, resources, funding gaps and projected costs of the initiative. Budget tools arecritical for not only maintaining balanced finances but for helping sustain community schoolinitiatives. We used three central research questions to guide the literature review ofcommunity school budget tools: 1. What is the purpose of the budget tool and how is it used? 2. Is the budget tool intended for long or short term fiscal mapping? 3. Are there identified promising practices for budgeting?Published research on community school and other relevant budget tools from 2000-2011 hasbeen included as part of this literature review. Unfortunately, while there is sufficient researchregarding funding and sustainability at community schools, there seems to be a lack of publiclyaccessible budget tools aside from those published by the Finance Project. We were not able toidentify community school initiatives that had made publicly available the budget tools theyused throughout the process.Review 1. Purpose and Use of the Budget ToolsThe purpose of the “Cost Worksheet for Out-of-School Time and Community School Initiatives”is to aid the process of creating an operating budget. It intends to help program developersidentify the range of costs that their initiative will incur1. Program developers use theworksheet by filling in the different categories of program and infrastructure cost assumptionsand the corresponding cash expense of in-kind contribution.The other two budget tools published by the Finance Project are intended for PromiseNeighborhood Initiatives, but can be adapted to community schools because of their similarfinancial circumstances. “Sustaining Community Revitalization: A Tool for Preparing Budgets forPromise Neighborhood Initiatives” provides guidance on how to use the attached budgetworksheets2. It should be used as a set of instructions and for how and why to complete a costdevelopment tool. “Sustaining Community Revitalization: A Tool for Mapping Funds for Promise1 Langford, Barbara Hanson. “Cost Worksheet for Out-of-School Time and Community School Initiatives.” TheFinance Project, September 2002. Web. 19 December 2011.<http://76.12.61.196/publications/costworksheet.pdf>.2 Martinez, Laura and Jennifer Gager Holland. “Sustaining Community Revitalization: A Tool for Preparing Budgetsfor Promise Neighborhood Initiatives.” The Finance Project, August 2011. Web. 14 May 2012.<http://www.financeproject.org/publications/SCRToolforPreparingBudgets.pdf>. 6 ©Urban Strategies Council, October 2012
  • 8. Neighborhood Initiatives” makes the case for fiscal mapping, especially for initiatives looking toreceive federal planning grants3. It also provides an overview of the fiscal mapping processincluding how to conduct a fiscal mapping study, along with worksheets for data collection. 2. Long vs. Short Term Fiscal MappingAll of the budget tools address both short and long-term fiscal mapping, although moreworksheets and checklists are provided for short-term fiscal mapping. 3. Promising PracticesThe Financial Project identified the following promising practices for fiscal mapping: (1) clarifywhat an initiative needs financing for; (2) estimate an initiative’s fiscal needs; (3) identify aninitiative’s current resources; (4) assess an initiative’s funding gaps; and (5) identify appropriatefunding sources and financing strategies4. There were also seven specific steps identified forsuccessfully completing a fiscal mapping study. These steps include: (1) determine the goals forthe study; (2) identify roles and responsibilities; (3) design the study approach; (4) gatherneeded resources; (5) collect data; (6) analyze data; and (7) communicate results5.ConclusionThe documentation of a community school site or initiative’s current financial status is anintegral part of developing realistic financial projections. Developing a budget also helpsfacilitate the development of an accurate program cost estimate, which is needed to sustaincommunity school initiatives. Moreover, a balanced budget is critical at community schoolsbecause it can be used to show funders that their investment is being used wisely andresponsibly.3 Joseph, Mathew H. and Lori Connors-Tadros. “Sustaining Community Revitalization: A Tool for Mapping Funds forPromise Neighborhood Initiatives.” The Finance Project, August 2011. Web. 14 May 2012.<http://www.financeproject.org/publications/SCRToolforMapping.pdf>.4 Martinez, Laura and Jennifer Gager Holland. “Sustaining Community Revitalization: A Tool for Preparing Budgetsfor Promise Neighborhood Initiatives.” The Finance Project, August 2011. Web. 14 May 2012.<http://www.financeproject.org/publications/SCRToolforPreparingBudgets.pdf>.5 Joseph, Mathew H. and Lori Connors-Tadros. “Sustaining Community Revitalization: A Tool for Mapping Funds forPromise Neighborhood Initiatives.” The Finance Project, August 2011. Web. 14 May 2012.<http://www.financeproject.org/publications/SCRToolforMapping.pdf>. 7 ©Urban Strategies Council, October 2012
  • 9. Community School Budget Tools: Annotated BibliographyCost Worksheet for Out-of-School Time and Community School InitiativesLangford, Barbara Hanson. The Finance Project, September 2002. Web. 19 December 2011.<http://76.12.61.196/publications/costworksheet.pdf>.The “Cost Worksheet for Out-of-Time and Community School Initiatives” describes how todevelop an operating budget for community schools and provides sample worksheets to aid theprocess. The document identifies two main cost areas: program costs and system-wideinfrastructure costs. In order to make the initial case to potential funders, the documentsuggests the school document its current financial status and develop realistic financialprojections. Tools: Operating budget worksheetsSustaining Community Revitalization: A Tool for Preparing Budgets for Promise NeighborhoodInitiativesMartinez, Laura and Jennifer Gager Holland. The Finance Project, August 2011. Web. 14 May2012.<http://www.financeproject.org/publications/SCRToolforPreparingBudgets.pdf>.Although intended for Promise Neighborhoods, the Finance Project’s budget tool can also beutilized for fiscal mapping at community school sites. Both Promise Neighborhoods andcommunity schools are built on the same core principles and focus on quality education, familyand community engagement and a continuum of supports. Furthermore, community schoolsand Promise Neighborhoods face similar financial circumstances such as time-limited grants,narrow, categorical funding streams and overall inconsistent revenue. The budget toolidentifies five key steps for building a stable support base: 1. Clarify what an initiative needs financing for; 2. Estimate an initiative’s fiscal needs; 3. Identify an initiative’s current resources; 4. Assess an initiative’s funding gaps; and 5. Identify appropriate funding sources and financing strategies.Sections I and II provide guidance for calculating different costs and discuss how to usebudgeting worksheets. Best practices: See five steps above 8 ©Urban Strategies Council, October 2012
  • 10. Sustaining Community Revitalization: A Tool for Mapping Funds for Promise NeighborhoodInitiativesJoseph, Mathew H. and Lori Connors-Tadros. The Finance Project, August 2011. Web. 14 May2012.<http://www.financeproject.org/publications/SCRToolforMapping.pdf>.Although intended to help Promise Neighborhood initiatives, the Finance Project’s fiscalmapping tool can also help community schools identify and leverage funding. Section I explainshow to conduct a fiscal mapping study through seven key steps, which include: 1. Determine the goals for the study; 2. Identify roles and responsibilities; 3. Design the study approach; 4. Gather needed resources; 5. Collect data; 6. Analyze data; and 7. Communicate results.Section I also discusses the special challenges of fiscal mapping for Promise Neighborhoods andprovides checklists to help guide the mapping process. The following section provides tools fordata collection, including worksheets covering a number of budgetary and fiscal concerns. Best practices: See seven steps above Tools: 1. Worksheet A: What Funds Currently Support the Cradle-to-Career Services? 2. Worksheet B: Analyzing Funding Streams 3. Appendix B: Potential Federal Funding Sources 9 ©Urban Strategies Council, October 2012

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