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Expanding opportunities for low-income students

Each year, 2.2 million students attend high schools that qualify as “dropout factories,” where about half will fail to graduate with their class. Citizen Schools works to stem America’s dropout crisis by engaging students while they are still in middle school, preparing them for success in high school, college, and beyond. 

Talented adults inspire struggling students

Research indicates that students who are falling behind in math or English in the sixth grade have only a 10 to 20 percent chance of graduating high school on time. Citizen Schools aims to reverse the trend through its Extended Learning Time (ELT) model, which provides after-school mentoring and support for low-performing middle schools.

  • With Cisco support since 2009, Citizen Schools has expanded its ELT program from 10 schools in 5 states to 30 schools in 6 states in the 2017-18 academic year
  • Volunteer professionals, or Citizen Teachers, teach 10-week after-school apprenticeships on topics they are passionate about, from blogging to filmmaking to robotics
  • Cisco employees are among Citizen Schools’ largest group of Citizen Teachers, with 298 employees leading 136 apprenticeships since 2009
  • A 5-year external evaluation showed that the ELT program is equal to three additional months of learning gains in math after the first year of implementation

Technology extends reach to more students

Donations of Cisco products enable Citizen Schools to reach thousands more students by more easily recruiting and training staff and volunteers.

  • An updated technology infrastructure helped reduce equipment costs, increase productivity, and cut down on travel time and expenses
  • Staff and volunteers at locations across the United States can meet and share best practices through instant messaging and web conferencing
  • Cisco supports US2020, a national initiative (incubated at Citizen Schools) to bring more science, technology, engineering, and math mentors into classrooms

Impact multiplied

Alumni are 2X more likely to go to college

71% of students who participate graduate high school on time

83% of participants are interested in STEM careers

Citizen Schools has a strong track record in creating successful apprenticeship experiences for early adolescents in partnership with urban schools.

Dr. Camille Farrington of the University of Chicago, a leading researcher in social emotional learning and youth development.

Citizen teachers inspire students

Cisco employees show middle school students how they can reduce their carbon footprints at home and at school.