Under the Obama Administration, the U.S. Department of Education has adopted a “place-based” approach to help communities improve outcomes for students and families through place-based initiatives (PBI), including Promise Neighborhoods, Promise Zones, Strong Cities Strong Communities, and My Brother’s Keeper, that touch more than 40 communities across the country.
See a FAFSA update.
A related federal investment, Performance Partnership Pilots (P3) initiative, provides state, local, and tribal governments with greater flexibility in using federal discretionary funds in programming to improve education, employment, and other outcomes for opportunity youth (between the ages of 16 and 24 who are neither in school nor employed).
As part of our commitment to place-based approaches, Jobs for the Future is providing technical assistance to the Department’s Office of Innovation and Improvement and to communities participating in PBI and P3 initiatives.
Communities face a number of interconnected challenges, such as inadequate housing, struggling schools, homelessness, and hunger, that feed into and perpetuate each other. The problem is that most solutions are singular in focus—bringing resources and attention to either education or housing or social services to children and families. This allows challenges to persist and cycles of inequity and disadvantage are perpetuated.
The place-based approach applies a comprehensive solution to the interconnected barriers to mobility for young people and adults in communities across the country. JFF helps communities align multiple systems and break through silos in order to develop pathways to employment opportunities. We bring an equity lens to our place-based work so that our strategies are effective for the individuals, neighborhoods, and communities that face the greatest barriers to mobility.
JFF is assembling resources, shared on this site, to direct stakeholders to research, best practices, and other tools to help them address critical issues in their local communities, such as two-generation approaches, youth workforce development, early learning, opportunity youth, and FAFSA completion. Forthcoming resources will include a brief on family and school partnerships and a fiscal mapping tool. See "Tools" for more information.