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Communities In Schools Receives Major Grant From the Walmart Foundation to Expand Performance Learning Centers

Resource type: News

Walmart Foundation (Release) |

Communities In Schools is an Atlantic grantee. ARLINGTON, Va., July 9 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Communities In Schools, the nation’s largest dropout prevention organization, has received a major grant from the Walmart Foundation to improve educational opportunities for young people through its network of Performance Learning Centers (PLCs). PLCs are non-traditional high schools for students who are not thriving in a traditional educational setting, and the Walmart Foundation’s support will allow Communities In Schools to expand and enhance the program. “Performance Learning Centers are a crucial component of how we use a proven model of integrated services to improve student outcomes and prepare them for college and life,” said Daniel J. Cardinali, president, Communities In Schools, Inc. “We are very thankful to the Walmart Foundation for its support and commitment to Communities In Schools, Performance Learning Centers, and the young people we serve every day.” “The Walmart Foundation is focused on helping create opportunities for youth to succeed, and we believe that a high school education is essential for success later in life,” said Walmart Foundation president Margaret McKenna. “Through our work with CIS and many other organizations, we are helping students graduate from high school, prepare for the workforce and become successful adults.” In addition to funding two new PLCs that will join the existing network of 36, the grant will provide students with resources, assistance and training for college, as well as support expansion of the PLC network through technical assistance and training of PLC and Communities In Schools staff. The new Communities In Schools-Walmart Scholars program, designed to provide access to college for economically disadvantaged students and help them reach their highest potential, is already underway. CIS has received 21 applications for six scholarships that will be awarded in July. The yearly program will provide up to $10,000 per student over ten years to help meet the cost of going to college. The comprehensive support services provided to students will begin while they are still in high school and continue through their college careers. Many PLC students did not believe that success after school was an option for them, and the Walmart Foundation grant enables students to explore various career fields through internship and job shadowing programs. Ninth and tenth grade students will be able to learn about the “real world” by following a professional in their field of interest. Juniors and seniors will be able to get on-the-ground training in a chosen field through internships that range from 20 to 100 hours. Communities In Schools is the nation’s largest dropout prevention organization, working in more than 3,200 K-12 public schools. Founded in 1977, Communities In Schools is headquartered in Alexandria, Va. Today, 1.2 million young people annually receive direct services through more than 200 Communities In Schools local affiliates in 27 states and the District of Columbia. Between 80-90 percent of Communities In Schools’ tracked students show improvement in academic achievement, attendance, behavior and promotion to the next grade level. Visit our website at About Philanthropy at Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) and the Walmart Foundation are proud to support the charitable causes that are important to customers and associates in their own neighborhoods. Through its philanthropic programs and partnerships, the Walmart Foundation funds initiatives focused on creating opportunities in education, workforce development, economic opportunity, environmental sustainability, and health and wellness. From February 1, 2008 through January 31, 2009, Walmart – and its domestic and international foundations – gave more than $423 million in cash and in-kind gifts globally. To learn more, visit

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CIS, Walmart Foundation