Urban Community Schools: Educator Perceptions of the Effects of Children's Health and Wellness on Learning

  • Diana J. LaRocco University of Hartford
  • Beth A. Taylor University of Hartford
  • Suzanne Cordier D'Annolfo University of Hartford
Keywords: community schools, community partnerships, action research, student health and wellness


Findings from a participatory action-research project that brought together 11 individuals from five of Hartfords seven community schools to engage in a focus group discussion about the effects of childrens health and wellness on learning are presented. The researchers and key personnel from Hartford Public Schools and Achieve Hartford! co-constructed the inquiry. Issues identified as interfering with student learning clustered into themes that include students and family members mental, behavioral, nutritional, and domestic/neighborhood health. The results are being used to create a call for translational research proposals for University researchers to address these questions and disseminate findings to Hartford Public Schools and related community partners.

Author Biographies

Diana J. LaRocco, University of Hartford

Diana is faculty in the Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership at the University of Hartford. In addition to supervising doctoral-level research, she teaches research courses. She directs the University-charted Center for Leadership in Education and Health within the Institute for Translational Research at the University of Hartford. She is also the University Coordinator of Assessment.

Beth A. Taylor, University of Hartford

Beth is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Sciences and Nursing at the University of Hartford. She directs the University-charted Center for Health, Care and Well-Being within the Institute for Translational Research. She is also the Director of Exercise Physiology Research at Hartford Hospital. Her research focuses on age and sex differences in vascular function and cardiovascular responses to exercise.

Suzanne Cordier D'Annolfo, University of Hartford

Suzi is an Assistant Professor and Coordinator of School Partnerships in the Department of Education. She is interested in two streams of work that focus on practical application: (a) the effect of brain-based learning on student engagement and learning and (b) implementing communities of practice with teachers to benefit students and inform practice.

How to Cite
LaRocco, D., Taylor, B., & D’Annolfo, S. (2014). Urban Community Schools: Educator Perceptions of the Effects of Children’s Health and Wellness on Learning. Current Issues in Education, 17(1). Retrieved from https://cie.asu.edu/ojs/index.php/cieatasu/article/view/1319