City Year brings together diverse, talented teams of young adults to serve in high-need schools across the country, where they support students, teachers and schools by working as tutors, mentors and role models all day, every day.
City Year AmeriCorps members build strong, “near-peer” relationships with students and provide academic and social-emotional support, while serving as essential resources to the school to boost student learning and achievement. Through their work in schools and communities, City Year AmeriCorps members not only make a difference in the lives of students they serve, but also acquire valuable skills that prepare them to become the next generation of civically-engaged leaders.
City Year AmeriCorps members form positive, developmental relationships with students and encourage them to come to school every day. City Year AmeriCorps members work in teams of eight to 12 members per school, partnering with teachers and principals to provide classroom support for students who exhibit one or more early warning indicators: low attendance, poor behavior or course failure in English language arts or mathematics. The volunteers also contribute to a positive school-wide culture, climate and community.
City Year’s efforts are having an impact on student attendance:
- In 2016-2017, students coached by City Year improved their attendance by at least two percentage points, which translates to an additional 3.5 days in school, or more than 5,000 collective additional days of instruction.
- City Year’s 2017 data showed that students attending schools served by City Year in Chicago attended school 5.6 more days per year than their peers in public schools without City Year.
City Year AmeriCorps members start the morning with high energy greetings for students, getting them excited and ready to engage in learning. They also connect with parents and families when a student is absent, to understand how best to support the student when they return to the classroom, and remind families about the importance of regular attendance. And they support other attendance initiatives within schools, including identifying and working with students most at risk for absenteeism and leading school-wide attendance incentive programs and recognition events.
A Diplomas Now partnership between City Year, Talent Development Secondary and Communities In Schools was found to have a statistically significant impact on reducing chronic absenteeism in the middle grades. An evaluation of the Diplomas Now partnership shows it’s possible to reduce chronic absenteeism even in the highest-need schools.
Find out more about City Year’s long-term impact.