Magazine article Nation's Cities Weekly

NLC President Appoints Task Force on Youth, Education, Families

Magazine article Nation's Cities Weekly

NLC President Appoints Task Force on Youth, Education, Families

Article excerpt

NLC President Brian O'Neill appointed a Task Force on Youth, Education, and Families earlier this month to focus on what a family-friendly, family-strengthening community looks like and to examine the roles governments have in working to achieve these goals.

Mayor Thomas Menino of Boston, Mass. is the chair of the Task Force. The vice-chairs are Mayor Michael Morrison of Waco, Tex. and Council President Pro Tem Les Wright of Columbus, Ohio.

The Task Force will take stock of and build upon NLC's ten years of solid experience in developing strategies to strengthen local government capacity n matters involving children and families. The goal is to take NLC's thinking, strategies, and actions to a new level.

"There are new opportunities to expand the scope of NLC's work and to enhance its value," said O'Neill. These opportunities are available with new partners such as America's Promise led by General Colin Powell with the ideas in NLC's Strategic Plan, and with significant and creative work at the local level in (1) education/city hall collaboration; (2) planning initiatives that support positive youth outcomes; (3) initiatives that support families such as child care; and (4) coalition- and constituency-building.

Task Force Work

Les Wright presided over the Task Force's first meeting on March 9 in conjunction with the Congressional City Conference as members began identifying key elements of its work program for the remainder of the year.

As a result of this first discussion, questions for the next meeting will include "How do we move away from a `programs' approach and toward a "systems' approach such as support systems and readiness systems?" "How do we go beyond `schools' to `education' and beyond `school-age child care' to `use of out-of-school time'?" "How do political issues affect these topics? …

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