Center for Optimized Student Support
The mission of the Center for Optimized Student Support is to study the most effective ways to address the out-of-school factors impacting student learning and thriving in schools.
Nationwide, there is agreement that schools cannot close the achievement gap without addressing the out-of-school factors that influence students’ success. Based in the Lynch School of Education at Boston College, the Center develops, tests, and disseminates innovative practices that address these out-of-school factors (across
social/emotional/behavioral, health, and family domains) by optimizing student support in schools.
By promoting best practices, the Center (formerly the Center for Child, Family, and Community Partnerships) serves as a national resource for researchers, training programs, and professional development. The Center seeks to make available to school administrators and student support practitioners, such as school counselors, social workers, adjustment counselors, and school psychologists, research findings and evidence-based practices.
Current initiatives of the Center for Optimized Student Support include:
- Implementing City Connects, a research-based approach to student support currently in 16 Boston public elementary schools (K-5/K-8) and 8 Springfield, Mass., elementary and middle schools
- Integrating a systematic approach to student health and wellness in public schools that includes a flexible New Balance Foundation curriculum on nutrition, physical activity, bullying, and healthy choices
- Developing an early childhood model of student support that addresses the specific out-of-school issues affecting children 3 to 6 years old
- Implementing the City Connects model in 17 Boston-area Catholic elementary schools and providing regular professional development for school counselors, principals, and teachers
- Piloting an optimized student support approach for secondary schools in collaboration with an urban high school in Dayton, Ohio
- Researching the impact of optimized student support on immigrant children, funded by the Foundation for Child Development [more]