Communities in Schools helps students succeedMonday, May 21, 2012 By Monica Lorenzo
Many students on campus participate in Communities in Schools, a program that began in the 1970s to prevent high school dropouts, along with helping them make a smooth transition from high school to college. Communities in Schools at Venice recently moved to room 105, where students can talk to mentors, get tutoring with subjects they're having a difficult time with, and participate in a variety of field trips offered to them. This year, CIS has provided field trips to the Museum of Tolerance, Descanso Gardens, and UCLA. This is the fifth year that CIS worked with Venice High. "They offer so many opportunities and are always willing to help," said senior Renee Perez. "And they do care about everyone that comes into their office." Along with getting tutored and going on fun and educational field trips, CIS also assists seniors with their college applications, FAFSA, and scholarship essays and recommendations. In order to familiarize students and teachers with CIS, the staff summons students who have been referred and discuss what CIS can offer them. Students who are interested in being part of Communities in Schools first fill out an application, and a free T-shirt, pencil, and doughnut, "It's a challenging but rewarding experience," said CIS staff member Jacqwel Brown, also known as Mr. Q. "I really enjoy working with students. Communities in Schools is planning an upcoming field trip to Creative Arts Agency (CAA), which represents many famous celebrities where students receive a tour and learn about careers, such as in the performing arts agency. Furthermore, the Communities in Schools program will soon open an office to Manuel Arts High School and Mendez High School, in East Los Angeles, according to CIS staff member Frances Davila. The national organization was founded by Bill Miliken, a youth advocate from New York City.