IT Takes a Village: A Case Study of Internal and External Supports of an Urban High School Magnet Career Academy

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine internal and external supports of an information technology themed (whole school) urban magnet high school located in a low-income urban community within the Southeastern region of the United States. We found the academy to be an exemplary case study for how schools can build a high profile reputation with investment from key stakeholders within the district and school as well as with the community, business/industry, and postsecondary partners. The internal investment of the school was spearheaded by not only the principal, but also district leaders (e.g., superintendent) as well. The career specialist opened the doors to external investment (e.g., business/industry, community members, postsecondary partners). Characteristics that contributed to the academy’s success included effective school leadership, effective communication, and ongoing collaboration.

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Funding

This research was supported by a grant from the National Science Foundation (Grant # 1614707).

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Correspondence to Edward C. Fletcher Jr..

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Fletcher, E.C., Smith, C.A.S. & Hernandez-Gantes, V.M. IT Takes a Village: A Case Study of Internal and External Supports of an Urban High School Magnet Career Academy. Urban Rev (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11256-020-00593-9

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Keywords

  • Career academy
  • Community engagement
  • School leadership
  • Social capital