A Leadership Symposium consists of a gathering of the leaders of the local Community of Concern schools to establish priorities for their local Community of Concern.
- Teams of leaders from each school- including parents, students and school administrators- meet to discuss priorities for the coming year regarding substance abuse education in their communities.
- The leaders of the local schools form small focus groups of 5-6 people (comprised of students, school administrators and parents in each group and representatives from 5-6 schools in EACH group) and dialogue about their concerns, and identify ways to make this a community-based effort to help kids avoid alcohol, tobacco and other drugs.
- Steering Committees can be formed to create broader leadership to carry out the priorities.
Here is an example of the steering committee’s goals. This document was put together by the Greater Houston Area Community of Concern. Their leadership in this area is important and valuable.
Local “city/state” Community of Concern
Purpose: A Partnership of Parents, Students and Schools Working Together to Keep Youth Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drug Free.
Responsibilities of Steering Committee:
- Plan and execute an action plan for Local (city/state) Community of Concern.(Community-based prevention effort)
- Join a committee and be an active participant. Committees can include Parent, Student and Faculty Education; Marketing, Public Relations, Communication; Strategic Planning; and Development.
- Serve as the liaison between the schools, the parents and the Community of Concern.
- Provide a way for schools to share information, expertise and resources.
- Build a community of schools with students, faculty and parents.
- Monitor group’s progress, and communicate with schools.
- Create excitement by encouraging school involvement and ownership.
Raise awareness among the schools/parents/students about key issues facing our children today about drugs and alcohol.
To help you plan your Leadership Symposium, there is a sample invitation, a sample planning grid, a sample booklet handed out to each participant, and the 5 questions the small groups can discuss.
These excellent materials were developed by the Greater Houston Area Community of Concern under the leadership and guidance of a parent, Peggy Rathmell.