Community

Instead of applying a standardized method or technique for addressing particular challenges, we take a step back and familiarize ourselves with all pieces of the puzzle.

We know it’s not always easy to be a young person or student in today’s world. What you do well and who you aspire to be are too often ignored; while what you struggle with is used to define you. That’s why CIS’ school-based staff meet you where you are, without judgment — and help you apply your strengths to get you to where you want to be.

CIS counselors are trained to equip and support you to reach your full potential. Together, we will develop the tools you need to prevent and deal with challenges that you face (these may include trauma, violence, bullying, discrimination, academic struggles, or family troubles).

We know every student’s situation is unique—that’s why we work hard to offer you, your family, and classmates personalized support.

Students at automotive high school

As an adult family member or guardian, you may be left with limited information about your child’s experiences in school. You may need support navigating the complexity of city, state and federal education policies that have an impact on your child’s education. CIS staff helps to bridge this gap and equips you with the necessary tools to support your children in the best way possible.

When working with any student or family member, CIS staff honors and appreciates each individual’s unique experiences, perspective, and talents.  Instead of applying a standardized method or technique for addressing particular challenges, we first take a step back and familiarize ourselves with all the pieces of the puzzle. Then, after time, consideration, and a building of trust, we collaboratively create and implement plans to help improve the situation.

As a parent or guardian, CIS staff is here to support your needs as well as those of your child. Contact us today to learn more about getting CIS into your child’s school.

Mother and daughter

Collaboration is in the DNA of CIS! We seek community partners to enhance our wide range of student and adult support services. The collaboration that CIS fosters provides an invaluable bridge between students, family members and staff to local community resources.

Some of our community partners include: Brooklyn Steppers, Center for Supportive Schools, Children’s Health Fund, EARS Entertainment, Epiphany Blue, Forever Loved Entertainment, Ivy Key, La Perle Noire, Made in Brownsville, Partnership with Children, School of Visual Arts, Teacher’s College, Women In Need, UFT Community Learning Schools, Zone 126.

High school girls with feminist art

Our team of experienced directors, managers, counselors, and youth development specialists provide much-needed support for school staff that is often unavailable elsewhere. In an important dimension to our school-based services, school personnel have access to management consultations, mental health consultations, crisis management, one-on-one classroom support, group workshops, and on-going peer support sessions. No matter what role you play in a school, we can engage in an appropriate and relevant learning experience with you.

CIS staff training
Profile: In School-Community Involvement

Johnny, a youth development specialist at Automotive High School in Greenpoint, Brooklyn

Johnny works as a youth development specialist (alongside a social worker, also from CIS) at Automotive High, providing emotional and social support to the student body as well as teachers and parents.

He says that what makes CIS unique is its ability to connect with the student body in a seamless way, and with empathy; “the students feel it, see it, and love it.”   Johnny is often called upon to facilitate mediation with students, deans, and teachers– creating space and dialogue when various parties don’t see eye to eye.

Through CIS, Johnny’s team has also been able to implement an array of after-school activities for the student body, including basketball, boxing, fitness, and music production.  They also facilitate a leadership class with an English teacher at the school, which helps students become advocates for education—the class is extremely receptive and enthusiastic, even planning an educational trip abroad.

Additionally, Johnny is working hard to forge relationships with the local community and its businesses, particularly because his students don’t live in the neighborhood in which they attend school.

Johnny’s creative, hip-hop-inspired approach has resonated with both students as well as staff—academic performance has gone up, and behavioral problems have gone down, over the course of CIS’ involvement at the school.

Boys on a basketball court