To ensure student and family success, Grand Island Public Schools has implemented the concept of CommUNITY Schools to the district. CommUNITY Schools are present to establish essential relationships between school, parents, and the community to eliminate barriers to services and create a solid foundation for student achievement. For many, a lack of time or transportation hinder accessibility to services. By bringing outside agencies to the schools, families are able to obtain services in a convenient location where they are already comfortable.
Events are in both English and Spanish, child care is provided at most events, and events are almost always free. They are typically held in the evenings or Saturdays and may include just parents, just students, or the whole family. Some services offered include dental checks, parenting classes, and immunizations. CommUNITY Schools make sure parents have access to and training on GIPS systems, work to eliminate barriers for students and families, expand and promote family engagement and family resources, and provide opportunities for families to support their children’s learning.
In 2018, the first CommUNITY School was opened at Lincoln Elementary. In 2021, a second CommUNITY School opened at the O'Connor Learning Center for the Early Childhood Education Program. The district has plans to implement CommUNITY Schools in all quadrants.
CommUNITY School goals are to prepare children entering school, attend school consistently, and see students succeed academically. There is also an emphasis on student and family health; physical, social, emotional, and financial. When student and family needs are met, students can attend school and achieve what they are there to do: learn in a stable and supportive environment.