Children's Aid Continues Efforts to Expand Community School Model Under New Pilot Program

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Last week, the Union Federation of Teachers (UFT), City Council and Partnership for NYC announced a new pilot program aimed at bringing health care and social services to six New York City schools. The Children's Aid Society will act as one of the service providers in partnership with Curtis High School in Staten Island. At a press conference attended by UFT President Michael Mulgrew, Schools Chancellor Dennis M. Walcott, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, Partnership for NYC President and CEO Kathy Wylde and Children’s Aid President and CEO Richard Buery and teachers and principals representing the six designated schools, the program's financial and structural details were outlined. The participating schools will receive $600,000 in grants provided by The Partnership for New York City, the New York City Council and UFT. Each school will have the ability to tailor its program, selecting those services most needed by students and the surrounding community.

This pilot program is based on a partnership in Cincinnati that similarly drew funding from various sources to provide a range of health care and educational services in city schools. The Children's Aid Society provided guidance and technical assistance to schools in the Cincinnati program, offering knowledge and resources drawn from our own community schools model. For twenty years, Children's Aid has been a leader in expanding school services and supports. Beginning with the Salomé Ureña Middle Academies, which opened in 1992, Children's Aid has partnered with the New York City Department of Education in more than twenty community schools in the Bronx, Manhattan and Staten Island. Open well into the evening, six days a week, year-round, these programs transform schools into community centers. The expanded learning opportunities along with health care services are critical to removing barriers to learning and ensuring each child thrives academically and socially. In 1994, The Children's Aid Society created the National Center for Community Schools. The center training and consultation regarding implementation of the community schools model. Additionally, the center is a leader in advocating for the model locally, nationally and internationally.