Convening For A Cause: The Launch Of The Collaborative Action Consortium

For over a decade, the Graduate Tacoma movement has fostered cross-sector partnerships called Collaborative Action Networks (CANs) to support youth from cradle to career. These networks, including Tacoma College Support, Out-of-School and Summer Learning, Early Learning and Reading, STEAM, and the Graduate Tacoma Advocacy Network, have now merged to form the Collaborative Action Consortium.

The consortium actively brings together community members to align strategies, share resources, advocate as a united front, and innovate transformative solutions. Our aim is to enhance collaboration, streamline our initiatives, and provide better support to our youth. Meeting bi-monthly, the Consortium addresses contemporary issues affecting the youth in our community. Last month, we launched our first meeting, which centered on social-emotional learning. We were honored to host guest speaker Tovah Denaro from Innovative Behaviors, who shared valuable insights on connecting with youth and handling challenging interactions.

Pulse Checks And Data Deltas

To elevate our community’s educational experience and support systems, the Consortium offers a platform that enables partners from diverse sectors to access the vast resources and expertise within our community. By sharing data collected from surveys and polls, we inform and shape strategic discussions. These dialogues often highlight critical challenges our education system faces, such as the need for mental health support, staffing capacity, collaboration with college students, program demand, transportation issues, and funding for middle and high schools.

Addressing these challenges demands robust collaborations between school districts, community-based organizations (CBOs), and educational institutions. By working in unison, we can increase awareness of valuable programs and opportunities for our youth. Recognizing these obstacles and taking action throughout the academic year will enable us to forge a brighter future for our students and their communities.

A Space For Collective Vision

As we witness the repercussions of COVID-19, including declining college enrollment rates, the need for equity becomes even more apparent. This is not just a matter of education but a civil responsibility recognized by both the public and our political leaders. We cannot do this alone, and that is why collective impact has been the driving force to the Graduate Tacoma movement.

Together, we have the ability and the power to create comprehensive support systems for all students, particularly those who face challenges even before setting foot in a classroom. It’s crucial to understand that schools cannot single-handedly rectify the profound issues that plague many communities, especially historically marginalized neighborhoods and communities of color. By joining forces through the Consortium, we can address these concerns more holistically, aligning our objectives and pooling resources from across the district and beyond.

Our communities are brimming with dedicated leaders and organizations equipped with the tools to rebuild, mend, and strengthen the civic framework essential for the success of our students and families. The responsibility lies with us.

To learn more about the Collaborative Action Consortium, visit