Date of Award


Document Type

Restricted Access Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Learning, Leadership, and Community


Department of Educational Leadership, Learning, and Curriculum

Committee Chair

Christie L. Sweeney

Committee Member

Allan F. DiBiase

Committee Member

Kathleen Norris


Research on the effectiveness of community schools has indicated positive results in increasing students' academic achievement and attendance, and in decreasing dropout rates (Blank, Jacobson, & Pearson, 2009). However, 'tvhile the literature claims that community schools affect students, families, and communities (Blank, Melaville, & Shah, 2003; Dryfoos, 2002; Minzey & Olsen, 1969; Olsen, 1945), there is no evidence indicating how those communities are affected (Heers, van Klaveren, Groot, & Brink, 2011). The purpose of this study was to describe and explain the ways community schools impact the communities they serve. The findings from the case study indicated that a) a public school can act as a community school, and b) a community school can facilitate the intellectual, social, economic, health and well-being, and environmental development of its community. Results from this study indicate that setting, trusting relationships, learning, and community engagement are the four pillars that any school can incorporate to become a community school. While a community school has the potential to facilitate sustainable community development, the researcher also found that the intentions of the people working in the school and the community in which that school is embedded are critical to materialize this vision.



Rights Statement

In Copyright