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EDUCATIONSUPPORTPROFESSIONALSMeetingtheNeedsoftheWholeStudent30www.nea.orgespCollaborationandcoordinationamongthecommunityofprofessionalswithinschoolsarearguablythemostimportantfactorsinaddressingthecomprehensiveneedsofstudentsfamiliesschoolsandcommu-nities.Sincetheeducationsystemhasamandateandasharedresponsibilitytofullypreparestudentsforcollegecareerandcitizenshipthewholechildcollaborationandcoordinationarethepivotsuponwhichthatmissionturns.Yettheseareamongthemostchallenginggoalsforprofessionalstoachieve.Everyaspectofeducationalimprovementinvolvestheabilityofpeopletoeffectivelyworktogetherforpositivechange.Withskilledleadershipthatharnessesthecreativityandbasicmotiva-tionofpeopletoapplynewknowledgeinsolvingproblemscollaborationcanresultinpowerfulandpositivelong-termchange.WhoIsInvolvedInSchoolCollaborationNolongeratritenotioneducationallead-ersandparentsknowthatitdoesindeedtakeawholeschooltoworktowardsuccess-fulcollaborationforbuildingastudent-cen-teredholisticapproachtoeducation.Attheheartofeffectiveandlong-lastingschoolcollaborationareeffectiverelationshipsamongallprofessionalswithintheschoolenvironmentadministratorsteachersExcerptsfromTheEngagedCommunitySchoolCollaborationforDevelopingtheWholeChildByCarolA.Kochar-BryantauthorofEffectiveCollaborationforEducatingtheWholeChildandSeniorAssociateDeanandProfessorSpecialEducationandDisabilityStudiesatGeorgeWashingtonUniversity.parentsthestudentsgeneralandspecialeducationteachersparaeducatorsrelat-ed-servicesspecialistsnursescounselorslibrariansphysicaleducationteacherstechnicalspecialistscustodiansfoodser-vicepersonnelandtradesprofessionals.Outsideoftheschoolsettinghumanser-viceagenciesessentialforcomprehensiveplanningforstudentsincludecommunitymentalhealthservicessocialservicesfamilyservicespublichealthservicesalternativeschoolprogramssubstanceabuseservicespost-secondaryinstitutionsandcareer-voca-tionalservices.Eachofthesegroupswithinandoutsidetheschoolcommunitymustbeengagedtosupportthedevelopmentofthewholestudent.WhyisCollaborationCentraltoAchievingtheWholeChildApproachThetraditionalstructureofschoolscanpromoteisolationamongprofessionalgroupsandimpedecollaboration.Thesegapsoccurwhencomponentsoftheedu-cationalsystemdonotconnectinamannerthatpromotesthechildsfullestpotentialwithintheeducationalcontinuum.Forex-amplespecialandgeneraleducatorshavetraditionallytaughtinseparateroomsorbuildings.Guidancecounselorsandschoolcounselorshavetraditionallyfunctionedindependentlyoftheinstructionalprogram.Theseseparationsarepartlyduetothefactthathistoricallydifferentcomponentsoftheeducationalsystemhaveevolvedseparately.Factorsthatseparatethemandpreventthemfromeffectivecollaborationarerootedindifferencesintheirrolesprofessionallanguagesorterminologyexpectationsforstudentspoliciesthatguidethempracticesandbackgroundsandtrainingofpersonnel.CollaborationCreatesaSharedResponsibilityandImprovesConditionsforLearningCollaborationhasgainedincreasingatten-tionbecauseresearchdemonstratesthatpeopleaccomplishmoreandmakebetterdecisionswhentheyworktogetherinten-tionallyonbehalfofstudents.Collaborativeteamshavemanyadvantagesoverindivid-ualsworkinginisolationsincepeoplewithdifferentexpertiseandperspectivesonstu-dentstendtobebetteratsolvingproblemsandhaveahigherlevelofcommitmenttonewideasandstrategies.Researchalsoindicatesthatactiveparentandfamilyengagementstronglypredictsstudentsschoolsuccess.Effortstobuildrespectfulcooperativerelationshipsamongparentsfamiliesteachersandschooladministratorshelpfamilymembersfeelmorecapableofcontributingtotheirchildseducationandconnectedtotheirchildsschool.Whenfamiliesaresupportedintheirparentingroletheirinvolvementintheirchildrenslearningincreasesandstudentperformanceisstrengthened.AsharedresponsibilityandsharedapproachestoaddressingstudenteducationalanddevelopmentalneedshelpingthewholechildbringtobearthecombinedthinkingplanningandresourcesofallwhosupportthedevelopmentofstudentsandfamiliesConzemiusONeill2001.Insummarytheconceptsofcollabora-tionandcoordinationleadtoinnovativepracticesnewrelationshipsandimprovedoutcomesforstudentsandfamilies.Clearobjectivesgoalsorendsareessentialasclarityofpurposeisoftenthekeyingredientinthesuccessofacollaborativeeffortforawholechildinitiative.Toreadthefullarticleandforalistofref-erencesclickhere.