How Schools Work and How to Work With Schools

Cover Image of NASBE Report How Schools Work, Click image to download report.

(click image to download report)

Across the country, millions of children attend public school every year. Their parents likely went to public school too, as do the vast majority of Americans. But attending public school, or even working in education, isn’t the same as knowing how public schools—and our nation’s education system—actually work.

How Schools Work and How to Work with Schools (May 2014) demystifies public education for policymakers, government officials, community members, business leaders, and others interested in partnering with schools to improve the health, safety, and well-being of all students and ensure they are successful in their academic pursuits. Inside, you’ll find:

  • Explanation of public education governance at the federal, state, local, and school levels and how national organizations influence education policymaking.
  • Ways to meaningfully and positively engage with the education sector, including examples of successful school-community partnerships and best practices.
  • Guiding principles for working with schools and practical steps for more successful collaboration with them.
  • Answers to the most frequently asked questions about public education. For example: What is Title I and how does it support low-income students? And, how are public schools funded?
  • Reliable data sources and resources for additional information on crossover issues in education, from school crime and safety, to school nutrition and health policies and practices.
  • A glossary of common education terms, acronyms, and important federal education programs.

DOWNLOAD your copy of How Schools Work and How to Work with Schools today!

How Schools Work and How to Work with Schools is funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). NASBE thanks the CDC for its support and acknowledges that views expressed in the report are those of the authors alone and do not necessarily represent the official views of the CDC.



Image depicting the governance structure of the US education system. Image found in NASBE's How Schools Work Think you know how our education system works?

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Image of a NASBE press releasePress Release

New NASBE Resource Explains U.S. Education System, and How the Community, Business, and Health Sectors Can Work More Effectively With Schools



Additional  NASBE Work

Webinar: How Schools Work
Hosted by CDC’s School Health Branch, in partnership with the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors, this webinar provides a good overview of  how state health and education departments can work together more effectively.

Community Eligibility: What Policymakers Need to Know About Changes Coming to School Meals

In this NASBE Webinar, experts review the new CEP compliance, and what it means for states. West Virginia, which has participated in a pilot phase of CEP, shares lessons-learned on implementation.

State School Health Policy Matrix 

As leaders across the country seek to improve student health, there is a growing need for tools to help navigate the complex world of school health policy. The State School Health Policy Matrix outlines relevant state-level policies for each of these areas, including a direct link to the policy.