STRATEGIES IN THE SPOTLIGHT

Citywide Education Progress Reports

KANSAS CITY: Nonprofit’s Myriad Approaches Help Parents Choose Schools

Show Me KC Schools, a nonprofit founded in 2009 by a local parent, helps families make sense of the schooling options available to them across traditional district schools, district magnets, public charter schools, and private schools. Show Me KC Schools hosts an online school guide that provides families with information about school academic performance, curriculum, after school programs, transportation options, and special education services. They also hosts school fairs and tours of schools and early childhood centers for parents, educators, and community members.

Recognizing the importance of their work, local funders provided grants to Show Me KC Schools in 2017 that enabled them to expand their staff and resources for families. With this added capacity, they developed a printed version of their school guide and distributed 6,000 copies throughout the city to reach more families, and began offering one-on-one support to families to help them choose a school. When a charter school slated for closure in 2018-19 delayed informing families about the plan until after some key enrollment deadlines had already passed, Show Me KC Schools helped many families understand the options available for the next year and supported them through the enrollment process.

View Kansas City’s citywide education progress report.

The Center on Reinventing Public Education is a research and policy analysis center at the University of Washington Bothell developing systemwide solutions for K–12 public education. Questions? Email crpe@uw.edu.