Application: Case Study: Developing a Proposal for Community Collaboration
Note: This Application Assignment is also a Major Assessment for this course.
Throughout this course, you have been examining communication styles, skills, and dispositions, as well as how your own background, or “schema,” can affect your perceptions and, furthermore, your communication competence. As you know, your communication skills affect the way you interact with others, one on one, as well as in groups or within collaborative teams. To be able to truly collaborate, you must be willing to set aside your personal agenda and agree to be part of a group, developing trusting relationships and working toward a common vision to achieve specific goals.
Part 1: Collaboration Scenario
In this Application Assignment, you will have the opportunity to apply everything you have learned about communication, team building, cultural competence, and collaboration skills to a realistic scenario in the early childhood field. This scenario will challenge you to draw on the various strategies and skills from your Learning Resources and personal experiences to engage in collaboration.
Read the following scenario:
You have been named as the executive director in charge of seeking a grant to set up a Family Literacy Center in your community. Your community is in an area where many people are from different cultural backgrounds and speak a variety of languages. So far, all of the following organizations and people have been cooperative and voiced their support for the literacy center: local library, public and private preschools, Head Start, as well as the local college’s TESL program. The only participants who seem to lack enthusiasm and have not been attending meetings are the families who potentially will benefit most from this program. It is vitally important that the families become involved so their perspectives can be considered and their voices heard. Their input in how the program is set up, organized, and implemented is essential to ensure that the program truly serves the needs of the community.
Part 2: Developing Your Proposal
Examine what you have learned throughout the course about effective communication skills, intercultural communication, and collaborative skills. Think about the skills, knowledge, and dispositions of effective communicators, relationship builders, and collaborators. Then propose what you would do, as the executive director, to ensure that your grant clearly demonstrates collaboration between all of the stakeholders, especially the families, in an effort to create a true Family Literacy Center. For your proposal, write a paper that addresses how you would approach this lack of collaboration by responding to the following questions:
- What communication and collaboration skills would you use?
- What other tools/strategies or leadership skills might you use?
- What cultural competencies might you draw upon to help you engage families in this process?
- How might you persuade other organizations to help encourage family participation?
Note: Be specific in describing the types of communication strategies and skills you would employ as well as the knowledge, skills, and dispositions that would help you engage all of the agencies to work together and build and bridge of effective collaboration with the families. You may need to research information about Family Literacy Centers to round out your plan. Be sure to cite all sources that substantiate your thinking.
For your paper, draw specific examples and ideas from your Learning Resources, personal experiences, and two additional resources you found on your own.
Part 3: Add a Communication Goal
This week, use what you have learned about team building and collaboration strategies and skills to add at least one communication goal to the list you began in Week 4.
Assignment length: Approximately 3 – 4 pages