The Center serves as a hub for integrated student support science and innovation. We connect the sciences of development, learning, implementation and economics to discover pragmatic and effective ways to transform students’ lives for the better. Our core strategies include research, implementation, and innovation.

City Connects is a systematic, high-impact, cost-effective approach to helping every child in a high-poverty school become ready to learn and engage in the classroom.

City Connects provides each student in a school with a tailored set of supports and enrichments designed to optimize healthy development and learning. City Connects provides a clear, organized, and evidence-based strategy for schools to more effectively and efficiently leverage existing resources and produce outcomes. City Connects uses data both to continuously improve service delivery, and to test out scientifically-based approaches to student support so that practitioners using various approaches can learn about what works, for whom, and why.

Read more at the website for City Connects.



MyConnects is an online student support information system designed to support the City Connects practice. It offers Coordinators a way to manage individualized plans to provide every student with the right services at the right time. MyConnects enables City Connects Coordinators to collect and access information about community resources and also generate reports to share with school teachers, administrators and staff.

S# Logo

The Systemic Student Support (S3) Academy is a district learning network created by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, the Rennie Center for Education Research and Policy, and the Center for Optimized Student Support. The S3 Academy is comprised of district and school teams from across Massachusetts that are working to transform their approaches to student support on behalf of the more than 85,000 students they serve.

Drawing on practical knowledge from the field, the Center has produced a series of practice briefs aimed at supporting the needs of practitioners as they implement systems of integrated student support in their schools:

Read the latest peer-reviewed articles from the Center for Optimized Student Support.

 Learn more about the research underlying integrated student support.

Leaders across the country are advancing integrated student support policy and practice. 


The Center for Optimized Student Support released Building Systems of Integrated Student Support: A Policy Brief for Federal Leaders.

Translating insights from the sciences into actionable policies to address the needs of the whole child, this brief was shared at a meeting of the National Governors’ Association.

The Center for Optimized Student Support produced a State Policy Toolkit in partnership with Communities In Schools to facilitate the development of research-informed legislation and protocols.

For succinct summaries of the research on integrated student support, see below