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Quick Facts

  • 2012 - Founding year of Evans Community School in Orlando
  • 2014 - Founding year of the Center for Community Schools and Child Welfare Innovation
  • 2014 - Founding year of Evans Wellness Cottage at Evans Community School in Orlando
  • $1.5 Million - 2016-17 Florida legislative budget allocation to fund community schools
  • 3 - Number of Community School Planning Grants awarded in 2014-15

Mailing Address

Center for Community Schools
College of Health and Public Affairs
University of Central Florida
Health and Public Affairs I
12805 Pegasus Drive
Orlando, FL 32826-2200

Phone: 407-823-2723
Fax: 407-823-0744

How to Become Certified

UCF-Certified Community School Process

Community schools are ready to begin the certification process when:

√  Core partners have committed to a long-term partnership and have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)

√  Community school implementation efforts have been in place for at least one year

√  All or most core positions are in place (director, after school coordinator, school health programs coordinator,
    parent coordinator)

√  Programming is strongly aligned with the needs of the school and community

To become a UCF-Certified Community School, schools must complete steps 1-5 below. The Center for Community Schools completes steps 6-7.


1. Submit Planning Registration Form. Complete and submit a UCF-Certified Community School Planning Registration Form. This form registers you to join the UCF-Certified Community School planning track and enables you to receive Center for Community Schools assistance with planning, implementation and evaluation. 

2. Submit Intent-to-Certify Application. Complete and submit a UCF-Certified Community School Intent-to-Certify Application. This application notifies the Center for Community School that you are ready to begin the certification process. Once submitted, you will be contacted by the Center for Community Schools and sent a packet of certification materials to help you with the process. A timeline will be established for projected certification material completion as well as a date set for the external review.  

3. Complete Internal Self-Review. Included in the certification packet, the Internal Self-Review is a diagnostic tool which should be completed collaboratively by core community school partners. Indicators within each standard should be reviewed and rated by performance levels of Not Using, Developing, Satisfactory or Excelling (see guidelines for each rating below). Each standard should also include a brief narrative summarizing areas of strength, improvement, and plans for sustaining efforts and improving efforts, as well as any innovative strategies that align with the standard. This Internal Self-Review is intended to capture community school framework elements, strengths, needs for improvement and innovative strategies. Responses should not be lengthy or take an extraordinary amount of time.  

4. Gather evidence. Gather evidence and include any documentation to demonstrate achievement toward standard indicators. Use documentation you already have, whenever possible. You can always provide additional in-depth information to the external review team when they visit if needed. Be sure to label each piece of evidence with the related standard indicator number (i.e., 1.1, 2.4, etc.).

5. Conduct stakeholder surveys. Conduct confidential stakeholder surveys using the community school surveys included in the certification materials packet. All core partners, key parents and community members, students, and staff should complete a survey. These surveys should be collected and given to the center for external review. 


6. Complete external review. At least one (1) peer reviewer and reviewers from the Center for Community Schools Innovation will appraise your school using the same diagnostic tool used for the Internal Self-Review. External reviewers will also gather information through stakeholder interviews and focus groups, and review the internal self-review documents, surveys and evidence. 

7. Determine certification status. To become a UCF-Certified Community School, schools must score at least 50% in each standard. Within 6 weeks of completion of the external review, the Center for Community Schools will determine certification status. Schools which do not reach certification status will be given on-going support and may apply for certification once a year until certification status is reached. Schools which reach certification status must re-certify every three years to keep their certification status.   

We are proud of this collaboration that brings additional resources to benefit the health and wellness of our students most in need.
— Brian Binggeli, Superintendent,  Brevard Public Schools
Technical assistance from UCF will determine the noneducational barriers and resources needed for students to be more successful.
— Tim Putman, Executive Director,  Western Division of Children's Home Society of Florida
The community school movement continues to grow because folks are looking at their schools and realizing that the only way to get young people the opportunities they deserve is through partnership with the community.
— Martin Blank,  Director, Coalition for Community Schools and President of the Institute for Educational Leadership
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