Hamilton County Schools and City of Chattanooga unveil Community Forward School Program

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn (WDEF) – First time since the 1997 merger the city of Chattanooga will be investing in Hamilton County Schools.

It’s all part of a new program called the Community Forward School Initiative.

This plan will increase success by investing in students and their families.

“Community Forward is going to help us ensure that students and families thrive by design,” says Dr. Nakia Townes, Deputy Superintendent for Hamilton County Schools. 

Community Forward Schools Partnership utilizes a holistic approach to tailor support, provide opportunities and remove barriers to student learning and family well-being. 

“The truth is students only spend about 20% of their k-12 time inside the schoolhouse. They spend 80% outside of the school house. It’s what we do as a community to make sure we are intentional with our support,” says Dr. Bryan Johnson, Superintendent of Hamilton County Schools.

The City of Chattanooga plans to invest and embed city staff members into 7 schools across the district to provide support for students and families with secure housing , job placement and more. 

“ Working with principals to bring families resources to support their kids’ social and emotional development, making sure they have access to safe and secure housing and even career services to open pathways to good paying jobs. The design here makes all the sense in the world – connecting the school to the adjacent community center and providing wrap-around services to make sure students are getting what they need,” says Mayor Tim Kelly, Chattanooga. 

The Community Forward Schools Partnership advances the district’s strategic plan of  an Engaged Community and Accelerating Student Achievement from cradle to career. 

 “We know that some of our children inside our classrooms don’t have the same opportunities in their home life that others do. This will help fill that gap,” says Mayor Jim Coppinger, Hamilton County. 

The school locations for the city staff members will be finalized before the start of the new school year. 

The city is still working out the budget for their investment plans but is excited to make a difference within our school system.

Categories: Chattanooga, Featured, Hamilton County, Local News, Regional News