New Action Strategy - please read BEFORE the March action post

Carol Lo March 6, 2017, 4 comments

New Action Strategy

We are shifting our strategy and process now that we’re a couple of months into the project. The first few weeks our goal was to get all of us connected, into small groups, provide relevant information and inspiration, and create this online community. Now that we’ve accomplished that, we want to focus our approach toward action.  Please read carefully and know that we welcome your feedback always. 


  • Each month will have an action plan (The March plan information will be a separate post.). You are expected to complete each month’s actions by the end first week of the following month. Example: March’s actions are to be completed by April 7th.
  • We will continue to post resources and you are expected to read, listen, or watch these resources. (More on this below in the Resources section) It is important that we share the basic knowledge, vocabulary, and awareness of the research, literature, and information on the topics of community engagement, college career readiness, and middle school success. Our goal is to provide the information you need to be well informed and may offer to your community partners, parents, staff, etc.
  • At the end of each month, we expect some type of reflection from you regarding of how the process is going, what you’re learning and planning, what the barriers are, and what are your successes. These reflections should be shared with your small group.
  • The Activity Sheet will be kept updated and you can always locate it hereBookmark it for easy reference.

 Group Dynamics

  • You will now use your small group for all your discussion, reflection, feedback about resources, to seek help creating meeting questions and developing good outcomes, to brag, complain and generally interact about the project. It’s easier in a small group to discuss, admit confusion, ask for help or to even crow about a success. We may ask you to broaden your post to the entire group but for the sake of creating community, most of your online interaction will take place in your small group. Exception: Sharing resources, see below.
  • We expect each small group to support its members. Haven’t heard from someone in more than a week? Write to them. Find out what is going on. Offer assistance, feedback, and encouragement. We are ALL in this together. That is your message to your community, to your group, to the entire group and especially, to our middle school students and families. We are here to support each other for success.
  • Asking for honest feedback isn’t easy, but to improve your projects, it’s vital.


  • Each week, you will continue to receive a post with READ and DO sections, these are provided to give you resources that help you move forward with Future Ready work. In these posts, we will continue to provide current, relevant information for you and to share your community partners.  The difference with these posts and what we asked you to do over the past few weeks is that you are not expected to respond. The action for the month will be the place where you practice, reflect and synthesize the information provided each week.

    If you have questions or feedback or ideas about the content, post them to your group. We are always reading your posts and will encourage you to share something more broadly if we note a feedback that everyone should see.

  • As so many of you already have done, we still encourage you to share good resources with the entire group -Cohort 1- when you encounter it. Be sure and tag your post with Resource List if you deem it worthy.

Community Partnership Engagement

  • Community Engagement is very different from outreach. We are including as an attachment to this post, Maureen’s Dessert Spectrum of Public Participation (Community Engagement in this case) and Outreach v. Community Assessment materials to refresh your memory (January was a long time ago, eh?)
  • We can’t say this enough:  Going into the partnership with a pre-planned, fixed idea of what you think you should do is not the goal of this project. We’ve been approaching our communities for years in this manner. Future Ready with the Library’s goal is to foster a more collaborative, equitable exchange of ideas with your partner to create something new.
    • Important side note: You are becoming the expert on the importance of middle school in a community’s successful CCR environment. You now know (and will continue to learn) much more about this topic than most of the people you will encounter. It is important you embrace and share your expertise in this area but to also work with your partner to help them achieve their goals.
  • Attachments
    • Community Engagement Assessment - Maureen
    • Dessert Spectrum of Public Participation - Maureen


  • The time to think about your project’s outcomes is NOW. Think and discuss what good, measurable outcomes for your project are and help your Community Partner think about them as well. They may have never heard of the concept of evaluation by developing, measuring, and assessing outcomes. But they benefit from developing this skill. The more you know and share about developing outcomes, the more you become a community leader, because many funding requests now rely on this system of evaluation. Even a retail partner wants to generate measurable outcomes and report on how successful those target outcomes goals are.  In future months we will be asking you to develop outcomes that you want to achieve with your FRwtL project.
  • While you may have slightly different ideas about what outcomes you desire, theirs may stem from different target goals than yours, it is important to think about outcomes EARLY in the process. We’re including Denise’s slide with the 3 crucial questions about good outcomes for your review. It is never too early to think about evaluation.
  • Attachment
    • 0utcomes-Denise


As we said, documenting the process is every bit as important as documenting the eventual result. Keep notes, take pictures, reflect. Future Ready with the Library is very interested in the how and why of your efforts. The goal of this grant is to provide information and guidance for other communities and libraries to accomplish increasing awareness of college and career readiness for middle school students and their families. You are trend setters, pioneers, trailblazers, and leaders. Some things won’t work. Some will. Only by documenting all of it can others truly benefit.

Questions and Support Team

Carol, Linda, Stephanie, and Ximena are here to provide support, encouragement, and honest feedback. We know you’re creating something new and exciting and it is not easy. Don’t hesitate to ask for support. We will be checking in with small groups and individually throughout the process.





Ask a question

Post a topic you would like to discuss with others.

Related by tag