Established in 2010 as part of the district's Vision 2020 plan to create quality schools in every neighborhood, the clusters help coordinate instruction and activities among a cluster's elementary, middle and high schools. For example, in the Hoover cluster, school communities from Hoover High, Wilson and Clark middle schools, along with elementary schools Adams, Central, Cherokee Point, Edison, Franklin, Hamilton, Joyner, Normal Heights, Parks and Rowan meet monthly to promote continuity, communication and collaboration. Area superintendents share the leadership and coordination of the clusters in their respective learning communities.
According to the Vision 2020, "Curriculum will be coordinated across the K-12 curriculum in each cluster to assure continuity across the curriculum," which ensures that students can move more successfully from elementary to middle to high school. Another goal of Vision 2020 is for schools to extend beyond the school site, not only to home and around the world through technology, but through the cluster committees to the entire community.
Other goals for clusters include:
- Cluster councils will promote the schools in their communities
- Cluster councils will work with schools, community and district staff to improve the quality of their neighborhood schools.
- Cluster councils will be a democratic representation of the school community including teachers, administrators, support staff, students, parents and community members.
- Parents will play an integral role in school site governance councils and cluster councils.
- Community members will participate in cluster councils alongside parents and staff.