How City Connects Keeps Learning

Graduate student researchers Despina Petsagourakis and Agnes Chung

City Connects is constantly learning. We learn from the experiences of our City Connects coordinators and the national array of schools and communities in which we work. And because City Connects is based in Boston College’s Lynch School of Education, we are also learning from different scientific fields about how we can make City Connects better. Once we have this knowledge, we go out and share it.

This cycle of learning was on display last week when Agnes Chung and Romita Mitra – both graduate students at Boston College’s Lynch School of Education – went to a Harvard Graduate School of Education conference to share two research posters about City Connects. The theme of the conference was “Spanning the Divide: Building Bridges through Research.” Continue reading

Seven Things We Know from the Developmental Sciences

Because science tells us more and more about how children’s brains work, we’ve gotten better at providing children with the services and opportunities they need to thrive.

Our Center at the Boston College Lynch School of Education published a brief on the scientific foundation of our work called, “Principles of Effective Practice for Integrated Student Support,” which explains:

“Developmental science illuminates risks to child development and learning, as well as opportunities for meaningful intervention.”

“This research provides insight into why experiences like poverty and trauma can inhibit learning, and what can be done to counteract their effects.” These insights come from the sciences of psychology, human development, cognitive science, and neurobiology.

What do we know, so far? Continue reading

The Clayton Christensen Institute Highlights Education Trends

City Connects Saint John Paul II: Columbia Campus

What will educational innovation look like in 2017?

In a recent blog post, the Clayton Christensen Institute – “a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank dedicated to improving the world through disruptive innovation” — shares its insights on key trends.

One trend: “Wraparound services will get a boost—hopefully for the sake of learning.”

“New metrics, like school climate or social and emotional progress, are likely to generate demand for interventions that attend to nonacademic factors of students’ experiences.” Continue reading

The Power of Communities to Provide Health Care



While many schools provide full or part-time nurses as well as other health services, their efforts — and budgets — often can’t keep up with the need. Increasing numbers of children are growing up in disadvantaged circumstances, and as a result, more children have health problems that interfere with their ability to learn.

“Children who are poor have higher rates of hospital admissions, disability days, and death rates. They have inadequate access to preventive, curative, and emergency care and are affected more frequently by poor nutrition,” Dr. David Wood wrote in 2003 in Pediatrics, the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Continue reading