Who We Are

We began as an ad-hoc gathering of local business and education leaders, wanting to better understand Manchester’s public schools and how we might partner with others to create opportunities for their improvement. Today, Manchester Proud has become a community movement, united by our pride in Manchester and our shared commitment to the success of every student, and therefore, our entire community.

Our community-based approach brings together families, students, educators, and community members to shape and drive a collaborative, strategic planning process. Together, we will define priorities for student and family success and build in the accountability needed for effective implementation.

Manchester Proud has no affiliations, political or otherwise. We are empowered by our fundamental belief in the strength of working together, equitably, inclusively, and collaboratively. Our sole agenda is to build a stronger Manchester through the excellence of our public schools, and we believe that NOW is the time to act!

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Frequently Asked Questions

What we are doing

Between late 2017 and February 2020, Manchester Proud partnered with the Manchester community, school district, its board, administration, principals, teachers, and staff to develop a clear, comprehensive, and compelling plan for the future of our schools. That plan was accepted “with gratitude” by the Board of School Committee on Feb. 20, 2020. We are now working with those same stakeholders to support the implementation of the plan.

We raised private funds for the development of this strategic plan, which included the services of skilled project managers; community engagement facilitators; world-class, innovative educational planners; and communications coordinators.

We believe the creation and implementation of the plan must include several components:

  • Visioning: To develop a collective sense of our values and aspirations – for our schools and community;
  • Community Engagement: To enable all voices to be heard, to generate understanding and support, and to ensure that our plan is by and for the residents of Manchester;
  • Definitive Goals: For the advancement of our schools, with accountability for implementation;
  • Leveraging Existing Resources: To embrace Manchester’s extraordinary entrepreneurs, educators, service providers, and skilled workers, across a diversity of talents and cultures; and,
  • Championing the realization of an equitable, inclusive, and achievable vision for our schools – to create a plan that is both practical and inspiring.
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We are in this together

In an increasingly competitive world, our public schools are the key to Manchester’s future success. Certainly, those families with school-age children want opportunities for their kids to excel. Consider also that our schools impact all of our lives; in so many ways they are essential to a vibrant community.

Among the benefits of living and working in a community with great schools are:

  • Neighborhoods are safer and more welcoming;
  • Good jobs are available because quality companies choose to locate in Manchester;
  • Property values are enhanced by the excellent reputation of our schools; and,
  • Residents take pride in civic engagement, eagerly and respectfully participating in matters of importance to our community.

Manchester Proud Community Planning Group

Manchester Proud’s new Community Planning Group will ensure the development of Manchester School District’s new strategic plan is driven by the community and responsive to its feedback.

The group’s 28 members were chosen by an independent selection committee from a pool of 90 applications. The members are representative of the City’s many constituencies, from parents and students, to educators and community leaders.

Community Planning Group Members

Manchester Proud Champions Council

Manchester Proud has been organized in the spirit of a community movement.  While we have formed a Champions Council to create the legal authority needed for us to contract with consultants, the real work of Manchester Proud is undertaken by work groups and individual volunteers.  Our work groups meet to facilitate our community engagement plan, define our strategic initiatives, and coordinate communications. Most importantly, they are being populated diversely by representatives from across our community. Barry Brensinger serves as Manchester Proud’s Coordinator. 

Champions Council Members
Manchester Proud Champions
Exploratory Work Groups Members

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Manchester Proud is creating a plan to remodel our schools to make sure they have the supports to ready our students, and therefore our city, for the challenges and opportunities ahead.