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School–University Partnerships: Reflections and Opportunities

Peabody Journal of Education: Issues of Leadership, Policy, and Organizations, Vol. 88, No. 5

Mary E. Walsh, Boston College
Sarah Backe, Boston College

ABSTRACT

Universities and schools have a long history of partnering with one another to achieve a range of educational goals in America's schools. For many years, the needs of the universities were the primary impetus for partnership. Universities needed practicum sites for student teachers and other educational professionals, as well as participants for the research of university social science faculty. In more recent years, the balance has begun to shift dramatically so that the needs of schools are increasingly driving the formation of school–university partnerships. This article briefly describes the recent history, development, and major foci of school–university partnerships. After identifying a relatively neglected area of school–university partnerships, the article describes an existing partnership that addresses this area in order to illustrate the potential and opportunities for partnership. Finally, this article closes with a discussion of the challenges and potential benefits of school–university partnerships.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Mary E. Walsh is the Daniel E. Kearns Professor of Urban Education and Innovative Leadership in the Department of Counseling, Developmental, and Educational Psychology, Lynch School of Education, Boston College, Director of the Boston College Center Optimized Student Support, and Executive Director of City Connects, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts.

Sarah Backe is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Counseling, Developmental, and Educational Psychology, Lynch School of Education, Boston College, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts.