Yesterday I visited two South Bronx schools supported by an impressive community-based organization (CBO) East Side House Settlement.  One school was a college prep school that was one of three that replaced a large struggling school.  The other was an  transfer (alternative) school for over aged/under credited students. 

Both schools had at least six East Side employees that worked in concert with school staff to provide counseling, college/career advising, and brokering links to youth/family services.  

Communities In Schools provides similar services in hundreds of schools and receives some state support in GA & TX, but nothing close to the level of support East Side is able to provide in the Bronx. 

If we’re serious about ‘no child left behind’ we’ll need to attack pockets of poverty with the thick web of support that makes East Side schools work.

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Tom Vander Ark is author of Difference Making at the Heart of Learning, The Power of Place, Better Together, Smart Parents, Smart Cities and Getting Smart. He is co-founder of Getting Smart and serves on the boards of Education Board Partners, 4.0 Schools, Digital Learning Institute, Latinx Education Collaborative, Mastery Transcript Consortium and eduInnovation. Follow Tom on Twitter, @tvanderark.


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