Mid-Point Findings of National Evaluation Show Effectiveness of CIS Model

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Communities In Schools |

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The first results to emerge from the Communities In Schools National Evaluation, an independent, third-party study, indicate that the CIS Model of integrated student services has a positive impact on school-wide outcomes. Based on an in-depth analysis of 1,766 CIS schools and comparative analysis of outcomes for more than 600 CIS and 600 non-CIS schools over a three-year period, the study concludes:

• Among dropout prevention programs using scientifically based evidence and reviewed by the U. S. Department of Education’s What Works Clearinghouse, the CIS Model is one of a very few in the country proven to keep students in school, and is the only one with scientifically based evidence to prove that it increases graduation rates.

• When implemented with high fidelity, the CIS Model results in a higher percentage of students reaching proficiency in fourth- and eighth-grade reading and math.

• Effective implementation of the CIS Model correlates more strongly with positive school-level outcomes (e.g., dropout and graduation rates, achievement, etc.) than does the uncoordinated provision of service alone, resulting in notable improvements of school-level outcomes.

“The interim data is eye-opening, because it documents the link between well-run community-based programs, and improvements in school performance,” commented Daniel J. Cardinali, president, Communities In Schools, Inc. “This is very encouraging news indeed,” said Cardinali, “because it validates what we have always believed to be true about the CIS Model. The study is helping us understand why CIS works, how it works and how we can do better.”

CIS is at the mid-point of the study, which is being conducted by ICF International, known for its high standards of rigor and comprehensive research design. In June, The Atlantic Philanthropies awarded CIS a grant to complete the final two years of the five-year study, which will include student-level randomized control trials. With the financing to complete this research, CIS is confident that the evaluation will aid the organization in establishing itself as a national education leader providing integrated student services to more than 1.2 million students annually.

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