CIS on the Frontlines: CIS of Virginia Network Response to COVID-19

When the Covid-19 pandemic forced school to become a virtual concept in March, the CIS-VA network quickly pivoted to ensure the students who rely on our evidence-based program model for stability and resources didn't fall through the cracks. The paramount goal of our affiliates’ work during the closure was bridging the indefinite span of time until students returned to school, and

ensuring that when they could go back, they were ready. In support of this critical work in affiliate communities, the state office maintained strong communication with Department of Education and legislative partners in order to be adaptive and responsive to rapidly changing circumstances. Our team worked closely with the CIS National office to adapt and communicate changes in training, data collection and evaluation, never losing sight of our ultimate goal of emerging from this challenging time well-positioned to continue growing and increasing impact in our existing affiliate communities and beyond.

The trusting relationships cultivated by CIS site coordinators made a difference to students and families during school closures. As critical gatekeepers for basic needs and school resource information, site coordinators had an immediate opportunity to reinforce trust and establish a plan for check-ins that ensured connection to vital resources. While affiliate innovation and program delivery varied in each individual community, common threads of supports delivered by our six CIS affiliates included:

Weekly check-ins with case-managed students and families to provide emotional and academic support, as well as screen for any needed social service referrals.

  • Continuity in small-group supports via the most accessible and appropriate technology platform.
  • Ongoing individual support and counseling to promote social-emotional health.
  • Focus on building resiliency and developing skills that will help students emerge from a challenging time stronger.
  • Distribution of food, clothing, hygiene and cleaning supplies, school resource packets, and other basic needs, as well as technology supplies like computers and hot spots.

Relationships Matter From March 16 - June 30, the CIS-VA network recorded:

  • 13.5% increase in average number of supports provided per month
  • 117% increase in individual case management supports and family engagement supports provided
  • 188 additional family engagement supports per month (average

We need you, because they need you. Now, more than ever.

Please support your local CIS of Virginia affiliate.  Together, we can bridge the gap and make sure our students return to school stronger than ever.

Support the strength of our statewide network by giving to CIS of Virginia.