Keeping students in school requires engaging them in exploring all workforce opportunities, exposing them to the benefits afforded by a diploma, and ensuring their social/emotional skillsets are ready to transfer to the workplace.
What We Do
In the 2020 school year, the CIS-VA network reached 55,669 students, working individually with nearly 4,500 of those facing the most challenges to craft individual plans to overcome barriers to success. Of those:
- 93% of seniors working with CIS graduated or received a GED
- 94% had solid post-high school education or career plans.
- In total, our site coordinators provided 2,736 college/career readiness supports over the year.
- Skills development
- Exposure to workplace experiences
- Individualized goal-setting
to make CIS a link for thousands of students in successful transition from high school to high-demand segments of the job market.
Why It Matters
The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a disproportionate economic and health toll on the historically-marginalized populations primarily served by CIS. Black, Hispanic and low-income students are experiencing a 15-20% exacerbation of existing achievement gaps in school. Financial pressures and challenges with virtual engagement are expected to contribute to as much as a 9% increase in the dropout rate as the pandemic’s ripple effect continues. It is more critical than ever that vulnerable students are exposed to and shepherded along paths to the workforce that leverage their talents, maximize their potential and contribute to the vitality of the economy.
Creating Paths to Prosperity
CIS-VA will invest in refinement of workforce readiness programs to meet the extraordinary needs of the moment and shifting trends in the economy. We are actively seeking partnerships with employer, community colleges and other skill-developing agencies to provide both in-school and on-site exposure and hands-on training, work-study and intern/apprenticeship opportunities for CIS students. CIS-VA can coordinate partnerships on a statewide level or make connections with local affiliates.