School Turnaround AmeriCorps Marks First Anniversary at D.C. School

By CNCS Staff

Students sitting facing the board where teacher is teaching a lesson

As part of the AmeriCorps 20th anniversary, national and local officials visited Stanton Elementary School in Washington, DC, to mark the first anniversary of the School Turnaround AmeriCorps partnership between the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) and the Department of Education.

One Washington-area TV stations summed it up with this headline: “AmeriCorps Bring Support, Success to D.C. School.”

School Turnaround AmeriCorps places AmeriCorps members in some of the nation’s lowest-performing schools to increase student academic achievement, attendance and high school graduation rates, and college and career readiness in those communities. School Turnaround AmeriCorps members are serving in 68 schools around the nation, including 18 City Year AmeriCorps members at Stanton Elementary.  Eight AmeriCorps alums are also on staff at the school, underscoring how national service can create a pipeline for careers in education.

Stanton Elementary students and an AmeriCorps City Year member speak with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and Stanton DC Scholars Principal Rena Johnson. (Corporation for National and Community Service photo)

CNCS CEO Wendy Spencer joined Secretary of Education Arne Duncan; Washington, DC, Mayor Vincent Gray; and DC Public Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson during the morning visit. The group witnessed the school’s “Breakfast for the Brain” morning cheers, observed teachers and City Year AmeriCorps members interacting with students, and held a roundtable discussion about the Stanton School Turnaround AmeriCorps program with City Year members and school leaders.

One of the goals of the School Turnaround AmeriCorps is to connect with students at each location with interventions tailored to the specific needs of the community being served. City Year members at Stanton are serving before, during, and after school to provide intensive, individualized support in reading and math, social-emotional skill development, and whole-school support of school climate and culture.

School and city officials noted that City Year’s AmeriCorps members are making a mark at the school, bonding with the students and becoming a part of the community it serves.

AmeriCorps places thousands of teachers, tutors, and mentors into low-performing schools each year, helping students succeed from the time before they enter kindergarten until they finish college. Join AmeriCorps as we continue to share stories of the program’s impact on education during the month of February.

The Corporation for National and Community Service is celebrating the 20th anniversary of AmeriCorps and highlighting the theme of education during the month of February. For more information about the 20th anniversary, please visit the AmeriCorps 20th Anniversary Resource Center.

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