Citizen Schools

Rating: 4.75 stars   8 reviews

Issues: Children & Youth, Education

Location: 308 Congress St 5th Floor Boston MA 02210 USA

Mission: Citizen Schools partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for low-income children across the country.

We mobilize a second shift of afternoon educators, who provide academic support, leadership development, and "apprenticeships"—hands-on projects taught by volunteers from business and civic organizations. At Citizen Schools, students develop the skills they need to succeed in high school, college, the workforce, and civic life.

Programs:

Citizen Schools was founded in 1995 to educate youth, strengthen communitites and bring new solutions to the challenge of young adult education. Citizen Schools uses the out-of-school hours (80% of a child's waking hours) and a high quality apprenticeship learning model to change life trajectories for low-income, middle school children.

In 2009, Citizen Schools operated at forty-four sites, serving almost 5,000 low-income students in twenty school districts across seven states and engaged approximately 4,000 volunteers.

Students are enrolled for the entire school year and participate in an integrated program of skill-building, leadership, and teamwork. Citizen Schools works with students intensively and consistently to build students' academic skills and expand their opportunities.

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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

Together with two friends, I taught US government, campaigns and elections last fall at Elmhurst Community Prep in Oakland. The Teaching Fellow assigned to us helped prepare a semester-long scope and sequence for our class, and helped manage our group of great middle school kids. As a first-time teacher, this was a great help. The students were very engaged and excited, and we culminated the semester with a mock election for Congress. I've always wanted to teach and this was a great way to do it!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing firsthand how students can become excited about school and learning when adults share their experience and life's work in a middle school classroom.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

recruit even more volunteers to serve as "Citizen Teachers"

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

My lawfirm is a corporate sponsor of Citizen Schools. Being involved in their program makes my company a nicer place to work. It brings employees together for an event we can all feel good about and it gets us out working in the community, meeting great people and great kids who we otherwise wouldn't know.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Whether for long term projects, such as preparing students for mock trial, or shorter seminars, such as discussions of Civil Rights history on Martin Luther King day, I am always impressed by how much Citizen Schools does to engage kid's and make them feel invested in their community.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

expand their services so that they could serve a larger portion of the community.

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I became involved in Citizen Schools as an apprenticeship teacher after participating in their 6 Degrees event, which was promoted through my workplace, Cisco. I decided to become involved as an apprenticeship teacher. I taught the Campbell Creative Crew class where student learned about advertising and the skills needed to create an ad campaign resulting in their own campaign development. The apprenticeship program is a place to teach what you love to students who require and desire knowledge on how they can become anything they want to be if they stay in school and go to college. The Citizen School staff at Campbell Middle School run a tight ship - keeping students inline, engaged and aware of their own brilliance. I have a long history of volunteering, fundraising and board membership with nonprofilts supporting children over the years. Citizen Schools currently has my attention and commitment - both heart and soul. I am excited to start my 2nd semester of the Campbell Creative Crew apprenticeship this week.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

...the first hand experience of teaching an apprenticeship class, as I saw the students use some of the 21st century skills that are the cornerstones of Citizen Schools - teamwork (working together to create advertising slogans, mascots, commercials), leadership (lead the team in directing commercials, leading small work groups), oral presentation (standing up in front of 100 students to give a teachback and talking one on one with adults about their apprenticeship).

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I don't have any particular recommendation for change at this time. I feel it is a well run, well respected and results oriented organization.

 
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Rating: 4 stars  

Last winter I had the opportunity to participate in a shadowing experience (externship) in Oakland, CA and was very impressed with the students respect for the staff and the staff's ability to create an environment where authority figures worked for the students and not for the school. They catered their program to fit the needs of the students at their school and the students showed them a lot of respect.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my shadowing experience. I was able to attend meetings, learn about the fellowship, sit through different components of the school day, even teach my own "mini apprenticeship" for a day!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

seek out more people of color since a majority of the populations that the organization serves are students of color.

 
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