The Community School strategy is a partnership facilitated by Family League together with Baltimore City Public Schools, the Mayor’s Office and Baltimore City Council.

A Community School (CS) is both a place and a set of strategic partnerships that promote student achievement, positive conditions for learning, and the well-being of families and communities.


The CS strategy is intentionally aligned with Out-Of-School Time (OST) programming. OST programs provide students with the opportunity to explore new ideas, build 21st century skills, find new talents, and experience success.


Through the work of a community-based partner, the Lead Agency (LA) leverages unique community resources to meet needs with a focus on children and families. A full-time Community School Coordinator (CSC) at each school coordinates resources and partnerships that transform a school into a hub of integrated service delivery, creating one seamless access point to critical supports.


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In 2020, Family League commissioned Inciter to complete a three-year retrospective of its work in the City schools space. This report details findings from an evaluation conducted by Inciter of Family League-funded community schools in Baltimore City and school-specific programming including Out-of-School Time (OST) programs over three school years of implementation (School Year 2017-18, School Year 2018-19, and School Year 2019-20). Included in the evaluation are 44 community schools and 42 OST programs.


Key findings include:

OST programs are providing a safe and supportive environment for the students who attend them, based on the youth and school-age program quality assessment. Overall, students feel safe in their OST programs and report that their OST programs help them find better ways to fix their problems.


Chronic absenteeism, when examined by strength category, decreased among schools focused on Culturally Relevant programming, as well as Newcomer Integration.


Community Schools with strength in Early Childhood had the highest percentage of students demonstrating readiness in two of the three years of the evaluation period.


Rates of students not being promoted to the next grade generally improved over the evaluation period in all maturity categories and strength areas.



Family League provides funding to 17 community-based partners (lead agencies) that support 43 community schools in Baltimore serving over 20,000 students (prekindergarten through high school).

2023 Community School List & Lead Agencies


In the Baltimore Community School Strategy, there is intentional alignment between Community Schools and Out of School Time (OST). There are 43 Family League funded OST programs attached to 43 community schools serving over 2300 students in kindergarten through high school. When youth participate in high quality programming, they are likely to benefit in a myriad of ways. They have safe and supportive spaces to explore new interests/ideas, develop positive relationships, find new talents, participate in active, engaged learning and skill building. In addition, there are leadership opportunities and youth voice and choice that are integral to high quality programming.


Family League’s comprehensive programs operate at minimum 10-12 hours per week throughout the school year and have an appropriate 15:1 student to staff ratio. Youth participating in these programs have access to nutritious supper/snack, diverse enrichments (STEM, art, sports etc.), academic enrichment (including college and career supports) and social emotional support from caring staff.  Families and community partners enrich programming and are engaged in multiple ways. Finally, all comprehensive OST programs participate in a continuous improvement process through Weikart’s Center for Youth Program Quality.

2023 Out-of-School Time Schools & Lead Agencies



This monthly newsletter provides updates and connects our Community Schools and OST partners with useful resources.



Family League, along with Baltimore City Public Schools(“City Schools”), co-chairs the Community School Steering Committee as a group assembled to oversee the formal designation process, partnership development, conflict resolution and evaluation of Community Schools.


Upcoming Meetings:

Dates Coming Soon

Those interested in attendance should contact Khalilah Slater Harrington, Chief Program Officer.



Past Minute Meetings


December 9, 2020


April 1, 2020


January 29, 2020


June 20, 2019

Community schools are a national evidence-based strategy to advance equity and reduce barriers to learning and success for students and families. A central feature is the community-based partner (Lead Agency) and full-time Community School Coordinator at each school who collaborates with diverse stakeholders to leverage resources and coordinate supports/services that meet the specific needs of students and families. These intentional efforts ultimately transform a school into a hub of integrated service delivery.


Community Schools in Baltimore are guided by a bi-annual needs assessment to determine needs and existing resources/assets in school communities and the annually developed Action Plan, informed by the needs assessment.


The Community School strategy in Baltimore is a partnership facilitated by Family League, Baltimore City Public Schools and the Mayor’s Office and Baltimore City Council.