Communities In Schools

Communities In Schools surrounds students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life.

Our Unique Model

Our evidence-based approach, adapted to meet each community's unique needs, is the basis for our success.

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The Dropout Problem

Troubled students and their families often have a hard time accessing and navigating through the maze of public and private services.

Through a school-based coordinator, Communities In Schools brings local resources inside the public school setting, where they are accessible, coordinated and accountable.

Meet an At-Risk Student

Rasheedah Phillips



Philadelphia | Pennsylvania

At 14, Rasheedah Phillips was a pregnant and confused teen on the verge of dropping out of high school. Both her mother and grandmother had children at a young age and had dropped out, and Rasheedah felt destined to follow in their footsteps. A site coordinator from Communities In Schools of Philadelphia saw the young woman’s struggle and helped her realize that she could continue her education.

Continue the tour or go to Proven Success to see Rasheedah now

The Site Coordinator

The Site Coordinator fills a pivotal role as the single point of contact working inside the school building to provide integrated student services. Site coordinators connect students and families with community partners and resources that address both academic and nonacademic needs.

Meet a Site Coordinator

Cruz Ramos

Berta Cabaza Middle School
San Benito, Texas


Communities In Schools of Cameron County | Texas

When Site Coordinator Cruz Ramos was faced with two brothers acting out in class, she visited their home to further explore the problem. She discovered that they recently lost their father, and were living in a cramped trailer with no electricity. Their mother was saving to improve the family’s living conditions but needed support. Ramos knew she had to take action to help improve the family’s circumstances to help the children thrive.

See how Cruz Ramos took action

A Collaborative Effort

The Site Coordinator works with the school staff and identifies students at risk of dropping out. He or she assesses the school and student needs and establishes relationships with local businesses, social service agencies, health care providers and volunteers.

The Site Coordinator in Action

How Cruz Ramos changed lives

Berta Cabaza Middle School
San Benito, Texas


Communities In Schools of Cameron County | Texas

Cruz Ramos tapped into community resources to make sure the boys had food and clean clothes. She also found an electrician and volunteers to ensure the trailer had sufficient power, and even helped build an addition so there was enough room for the boys to study and grow.

Learn about our student services

Integrated Services

The Site Coordinator works with volunteers, partners and the local community to provide students with the resources they need to succeed both inside and outside the classroom. Communities In Schools is cost-effective – for less than $200 annually per student, we are able to provide a comprehensive range of community services.
Click each service to learn more.

  • Basic Needs

    The site coordinator sees to it that students have the most basic things everyone needs to survive, including clothes, food, access to health and dental care, and a safe place to live. Some resources are made available to the entire school. Learn More

  • Academic Assistance

    Students receive the opportunity to work with tutors and study groups to achieve academic success. Learn More

  • Family Engagement

    Communities In Schools understands that problems at home can create problems for students in the classroom. Site coordinators connect families with counselors and social workers to make sure that home is a healthy, nurturing environment where a student can feel safe. Learn More

  • Service Learning

    Through numerous service-learning opportunities, students are encouraged to make a positive difference in the lives of others. Learn More

  • College and Career Prep

    Our affiliates help prepare students for life after high school through career planning, college visits, job shadowing, leadership training and more. Learn More

  • Basic
  • Academic
  • Family
  • Service
  • College
    and Career Prep
  • Basic Needs
  • Addressing Immediate Needs

A student cannot focus in the classroom if he or she is hungry, cold or tired, or cannot see the board. Site coordinators see to it that students’ basic needs are met.

See a local example

Communities In Schools of Brazoria County| Texas

Site coordinators in Brazoria County, Texas, work with The Kids Charity to provide hundreds of students with warm winter coats. "A site coordinator helped me schedule our first ‘Coats for Kids' event. Twenty-five students served by Communities In Schools received new coats,” said The Kids Charity Founder Terrence Thomas. “Over the next 18 months, we’ve purchased new jackets, coats, diapers, baby clothing and other  items for more than 315 children.”

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  • Academic Assistance
  • Making Reading Fun

Once a student’s basic needs are met, the site coordinator makes sure the student is meeting his or her academic goals. Students who need it receive tutoring or other academic assistance.

See a local example

Communities In Schools of Ben Hill/Fitzgerald County| Georgia

In Georgia, first-grader Anna Streat was having a hard time learning to read. Her teacher referred her to Communities In Schools, and they connected the student with a volunteer tutor. The tutor met with Anna weekly to work on her literacy skills, and now the student loves to read. “I look forward to reading with my tutor,” Anna said. “When I grow up, I want to be a reading tutor so I can help students become better readers. I am a better reader because of Communities In Schools.”

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  • Family Engagement
  • Helping Students by Helping Parents

Communities In Schools understands that problems at home can create problems for students in the classroom. Site coordinators connect families with counselors and social workers to make sure that home is a healthy, nurturing environment where a student can feel safe.

See a local example

Communities In Schools of Lakewood| Washington

Communities In Schools of Lakewood, Wash., realized that Hispanic students in their community were having unique struggles in school because English was not their parents’ first language. Their parents were unable to help with homework or easily communicate questions to teachers. To help, Communities In Schools formed a partnership with a community college to offer English as a Second Language, free of charge to parents. “Because my dad knows English he can help me with my homework,” one student said. “I’m very proud of my dad.”

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  • Service Learning
  • Learning to Give Back

One of the most important things a student gains from Communities In Schools is the ability to give back to his or her community. When students are able to make a positive difference in the world around them, they feel like valuable members of society.

See a local example

Communities In Schools of Pittsburgh-Allegheny County| Pennsylvania

Every Thanksgiving, Communities In Schools of Pittsburgh-Allegheny County students volunteer together at a local senior center. They set the tables, serve the food and spend the entire meal talking and laughing with the attendees. And when the night is over, they clean up. “It’s very personal for them, and it always amazes me how much they enjoy it,” said Jesse Sprajcar, director of programs and outreach.

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  • College and Career Prep
  • Getting on the Path to Success

Communities In Schools’ mission is to help students succeed in school and achieve in life. Site coordinators help students obtain scholarship information and apply to college, take students on campus tours and conduct mock interviews. They also help students find an enjoyable, sustainable career path to pursue through internships, job shadowing opportunities and leadership training courses.

See a local example

Communities In Schools of Seattle| Washington

Communities In Schools of Seattle works with the Danna K. Johnston Foundation to supply high school students with the tools they need to be successful after graduation. The Danna K. Johnston foundation gives students tailored success plans, academic counseling, SAT prep coaching and college field trips, and even has a nurse teach them how to combat stress.

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Proven Success

Each year our affiliates serving students report outcomes, as well as monitor and adjust services. Communities In Schools is an evidence-based organization; we effectively deliver the human, financial, and community resources to help children succeed in school and achieve in life.

Success Stories

Rasheedah Phillips

Community Lawyer
Philadelphia, PA


Philadelphia | Pennsylvania

A Communities In Schools of Philadelphia site coordinator provided Rasheedah with basic services such as health screenings and counseling, and helped her enroll in a program that provided baby wellness classes, an academic tutor to improve her grades, and career assistance. Rasheedah was able to graduate from high school and college, with honors. Today, she is both a successful lawyer and mother, and credits her perseverance to Communities In Schools. “They recognized my abilities and encouraged me,” Rasheedah said. “They didn’t let me quit.”

See how you can get involved

How You Can Help

For every one of our success stories, there are dozens of young people who need the help that Communities In Schools provides. You can make a difference - donate, advocate, or volunteer.


Raise your voice on behalf of millions of children in danger of dropping out of school. Join our Advocacy Network and ask your legislators to support evidence-based solutions to end the dropout crisis.

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Your local Communities In Schools affiliate relies on volunteers like you. Our 40,000+ volunteers make it possible for CIS to reach 1.3 million students each year. Find your affiliate to learn about volunteer opportunities near you.

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