School as Community

From Promise to Practice

Edited by Gail Furman

Subjects: Education
Series: SUNY series, Educational Leadership
Paperback : 9780791454169, 315 pages, August 2002
Hardcover : 9780791454152, 315 pages, August 2002

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Table of contents


Section I: The School as Community: Extending Our Conceptual Understanding

1. The Complexity and Coherence of Educational Communities: An Analysis of the Images that Reflect and Influence Scholarship and Practice
Lynn G. Beck

2. Postmodernism and Community in Schools: Unraveling the Paradox
Gail Furman

3. The Role of Community in Spiritually Centered Leadership for Justice
Colleen A. Capper, Madeline M. Hafner, and Maureen W. Keyes

Section II: Research on School Community: Focus on Teachers

4. Contradictions of School Community in Restructuring Elementary Schools: Lessons from a Case Study
Paul Goldman and Gerald Tindal

5. Tensions and Struggles in Moving Toward a Democratic School Community
Ulrich C. Reitzug and Mary John O'Hair

6. Learning from Educators: Insights into Building Communities of Difference
Carolyn M. Shields

Section III: Research on School Community: Focus on Students

7. Schools as Communities for Students
Karen Osterman

8. Thinking about Community from a Student Perspective
Carolyn M. Shields

9. Children with Severe Disabilities in Regular Classrooms: Risk and Opportunity for Creating Inclusive Communities
Charles A. Peck, Chrysan Gallucci, and Debbie Staub

Section IV: Research on School Community: The Ecological Perspective

10. The Microecology of Social Capital Formation: Developing Community beyond the Schoolhouse Door
Hanne B. Mawhinney

11. Listening to Communities: An Ecological Perspective on Education and Human Services
Robert G. Croninger and Barbara Finkelstein

Conclusion: Toward a Practice of School Community
Gail Furman



Addresses the question: How can school communities be created and sustained?


An increasingly important and appealing concept for school renewal is that of school as community. While community holds multiple promises for schools, little is known about the practice of community in schools. This collection furthers our understanding about the nature of school community, its practice in public schools, and the role of leadership in this practice. Of particular importance is the question of how community can be created and sustained in K–12 public schools with highly diverse populations.

Gail Furman is Associate Professor of Educational Leadership and Counseling Psychology at Washington State University. She is the coauthor of Community and Schools: Promise and Paradox.


"Enriching our understanding of what constitutes a community—what it looks like, how it happens—and the tensions that arise in bringing about a sense of community, are useful understandings for educators. " — Patrick James McQuillan, author of Educational Opportunity in an Urban American High School: A Cultural Analysis