The Alliance (ACTS) builds circles of practice to improve urban schools. With a framework of educational resiliency, ACTS helps school staff, families and communities to develop highly supportive, trauma-informed, community-connected school culture that offer engaging learning experiences for children and youth and foster the development of identities of success. Our models are culturally grounded, experiential, and collaboratively developed – there are no cookie-cutter packages on our shelves. We help parents, teachers, school administrators, and community partners continually improve their practices and build smarter systems. Our models address a critical need for alternative disciplinary practices, family-teacher engagement and leadership, strategic partnerships, and classroom activity.Urban families experience a range of stressors and challenges stemming from historic inequity and racial oppression that impact learning. However, communities are also sources of wisdom, resilience, and enriched learning opportunities. For children to achieve at a high level, they must develop confidence in their capabilities; their cultural legacy must be a source of strength; their natural abilities must be cultivated with care.ACTS provides professional, leadership, and initiative development programs for those who seek to improve their practice by collaborating with other stakeholders. We seek out natural leaders and help them to identify and build out the strengths and assets within their school and community. Together these leaders – educators, parents, community partners – identify the most pressing stressors facing their school community and organize for change.
ValuesJustice: ACTS believes fundamentally that the work of improved education is about equity and justice for all children in America. Our efforts are diligently dedicated to this end. Collaboration: ACTS affirms that the best educational results are achieved through sharing leadership among all who benefit from, provide or support the education of urban children; we are committed to inclusive, effective engagement with professionals, volunteers, students, families and community leaders, and to productive alliances with neighborhood, school, city and state entities. Cultural grounding: ACTS develops all of its programs and methodologies in ways that lift up and instill lessons of heritage, legacy and possibility in the hearts and minds of the adults and children with whom we work. Integrity: ACTS operates in an ethical, honest manner, providing open communications, access to meetings, transparency and accountability with all of our allies.