Teachers supporting students through mentoring




CSS uses a collaborative, data-informed, and relationship-driven approach, grounded with a focus on student leadership, to partner with schools to improve student and school outcomes. CSS helps Community Schools provide student leadership opportunities, strong family partnerships, engaging academic instruction, social services for families and community members, and professional learning opportunities for teachers. Through carefully cultivated partnerships with school leadership, students, families, teachers, and community members, CSS Community Schools develop customized Community School plans that focus on student attendance, health and wellness, social-emotional development, academics, youth development, and more. CSS serves as a lead community-based organization for over 20 Community Schools.

"CSS has brought an incredible amount of knowledge to our professional learning communities and helped foster an environment of trust among staff members."

— ELA Teacher, New York




CSS helps schools identify and put into place whole-school and targeted interventions that provide an integrated focus on academic, social, and emotional learning, such that every student and family has strong relationships with the school and an individualized pathway to success. Each child and family is strongly connected with at least one school-based adult; each family participates and partners with the school to provide students with an outstanding education; and all students and families benefit from comprehensive expanded learning and enrichment activities and appropriate mental health services.


Our work in community schools includes:

  • implementing CSS’s flagship student leadership solutions, including Peer Group Connection and Achievement Mentoring;

  • using data to drive continuous improvement that leads to streamlined school systems;

  • creating an infrastructure of student support in which students and families are connected to the school community;

  • building the capacity of school faculty and staff to provide both academic and social and emotional support for students;

  • implementing tiered intervention and prevention strategies that address whole-school needs and support high-need groups;

  • engaging families, community partners, and the larger school community by creating leadership opportunities and by fostering school-community two-way communication;

  • developing partnerships with community-based organizations that help leverage existing resources, such as cost-sharing of co-located resources or arranging in-kind donations of time and services.

With CSS’s support, schools implement a comprehensive and transformative whole school strategy that effectively meets the social, emotional, health needs of all students, with the vision of facilitating student success.