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Communities In Schools

Who is Communities in School?

Communities In Schools (CIS) is the nation’s largest dropout prevention organization bringing coordinated, integrated student services into public schools to meet the needs of at-risk students. Our mission is to surround students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life.

Struggling students and their families have a hard time accessing and navigating the maze of public and private services. There may be ample resources in a community, but rarely is there someone on the ground who is able to connect these resources with the schools and students that need them most. Through a school-based coordinator, we bring community resources into schools to empower success for all students by removing barriers for vulnerable students at risk of dropping out, keeping kids in schools and on the path to graduation and leveraging evidence, relationships and local resources to drive results.

Here are some examples of the supports we provide to students in schools across the country:

  • Academic Assistance
  • Enrichment
  • Attendance Monitoring
  • Family Engagement
  • Basic Needs
  • Life Skills
  • Behavioral Interventions
  • Mental Health
  • College & Career Prep
  • Physical Health
  • Community and Service Learning

Community resources provide the substance to our “Five Basics” model that has allowed our students to flourish over the last 41 years.

The 5 Basics:

  1. A one-on-one caring relationship with an adult.
  2. A safe place to learn and grow.
  3. A healthy start and a healthy future.
  4. A marketable skill to use upon graduation.
  5. A chance to give back to peers and the community.

Communities In Schools Pennsylvania (CISPA) is comprised of four affiliates, serving more than 164 schools sites, and a State Office in Harrisburg. In 2017, CISPA served over 46,000 students, and 95% met social & emotional learning goals, 86% met college readiness goals, and 97% stayed in school!



HANNA Packs, an offshoot of HANNA's Pantry, provides weekend snacks for students in need who are part of Communities in Schools of Pennsylvania.

Communities in Schools of Pennsylvania

Communities in Schools Site Coordinator

Jennifer Braun

Community in Schools Liaison, Grades 3 - 5
Thomas Holtzman