Community and Youth Collaborative Institute (CAYCI)


One Linden School Initiative (OLSI)

Child Coloring

Through its Strong Neighborhoods partnerships, United Way of Central Ohio is engaging in a Community Schools Collective Impact effort in the Linden neighborhood feeder pattern aimed at getting the conditions right for learning for the nearly 2,300 students attending Linden schools. The Linden Community Schools Network is a coalition of organizations, including Columbus City Schools (CCS), the City of Columbus, Ohio State University (OSU), and UWCO, who are united in their vision for transforming the Linden Community into a vibrant, thriving, safe, and welcoming anchor for Columbus as a City of Opportunity. Together, these partners have pledged to support the children and families of the greater Linden neighborhood in overcoming the severe challenges they face as a result of historic, enduring marginalization.

Hamilton Stem Academy / Windsor Stem Academy infographic

To do this, each partner is committed to the implementation of the Community Collaboration Model for School Improvement (CCMSI) which seeks to maximize school and community resources to support students and families in Linden. These efforts have been focused on having the schools serve as the hubs of support for the community. In this approach, an explicit agenda guides the development of school-family-community partnerships to support academic learning, promote school climate and positive youth development, engage and support parents/guardians and families, address non-academic barriers through health and social services, and promote school-linked partnership with entities in the community (such as the business sector). Currently, the work is being implemented in Hamilton STEM K-6, and Windsor STEM K-6.

CAYCI is engaged in technical assistance, evaluation, infrastructure support and other capacity building roles. In each school a School-Family-Community Coordinator (SFCC) works to build partnerships, facilitate buy-in, support infrastructure and overall CCMSI progress through each milestone. Lastly, product and process innovations, school report card indicators, and expanded school improvement metrics also provide progress measures. Key successes include many new and strengthened partnerships, strengthening of staff knowledge of the CCMSI, and addition of new health and social service supports. We also have OSU Social Work students interning in Linden schools to respond to and meet the needs of socially vulnerable youth and their families.

For more information on this project, contact Noelle Britt (email: