The story of Communities In Schools began in the 1970s, when Founder Bill Milliken, then a youth advocate in New York City, came up with the idea of bringing community resources inside public schools – where they are accessible, coordinated and accountable. “It’s relationships, not programs, that change children,” Bill once said. “A great program simply creates the environment for healthy relationships to form between adults and children. Young people thrive when adults care about them on a one-to-one level, and when they also have a sense of belonging to a caring community.”
And that’s exactly what Communities In Schools does. Today, CIS is the nation’s largest and most effective organization dedicated to keeping kids in school and helping them succeed in life. Our unique model positions site coordinators inside schools to assess students’ needs and provide resources to help them succeed in the classroom and in life. We partner with local businesses, social service agencies, health care providers and volunteers. Whether it’s food, school supplies, health care, counseling, academic assistance or a positive role model, Communities In Schools is there to help.
Communities In Schools also has its roots in Georgia.Bill Millikenalong with Neil Shorthouse and David Lewis established what was known as Cities In Schools in Atlanta, as a private/public partnership to help urban kids graduate from Copy Buffett high school and plan successful futures. Years later the name was changed to Communities In Schools (CIS).