Phone: (915) 926-8303
Degrees and Certifications:
Ms. Blanca Fuentes
COMMUNITIES IN SCHOOLS PROGRAM COORDINATOR
Communities In Schools (CIS) of El Paso is part of a national and statewide network that empowers high need students to achieve social, personal and academic advancement by surrounding students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life. Locally, CIS of El Paso serves over 9,578 students through 60 sites. CIS of Texas programs are administered by the Texas Education Agency.The mission of Communities in Schools of El Paso, Inc. is to surround students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life. For over 31 years, CIS of El Paso has been and continues to be the only school-based, non-profit organization serving the needs of El Paso City/County. CIS of El Paso started operations with one school in 1985. During the 2014-15 school year, we served over 9,500 students with direct case-managed services and 30,000+ students with indirect services. CIS of El Paso coordinators worked directly on the campuses of 60 schools in four independent school districts and one charter program (Clint ISD, Socorro ISD, Tornillo ISD and Ysleta ISD, El Paso Academy Charter High School), in addition to implementing three special programs.CIS of El Paso is aware of the importance that society and community play in a student’s academic success, therefore the primary goals of CIS are to help students in at-risk situations stay in school and improve in academics, attendance and/or behavior. The focus for CIS students are: Improve academic achievement, improve attendance, decrease disruptive behavior, promotion to next grade level, high school graduation, no contact with the Juvenile Justice System, encourage higher education and career preparation, and increase awareness through enrichment activities.CIS of El Paso believes that keeping young people in school is not just the job of the teachers or school, it is a community responsibility. It is the responsibility of the schools, parents, employers and community groups to help young people prepare for life. CIS of El Paso provides services year round and connects schools with resources that students need to stay in school and successfully learn. The degreed CIS coordinators assigned to each campus coordinate services designed to assist not only individual students but the entire school population. CIS coordinators receive preparation through Project Operations, Program Shadowing and Sharing, and staff development throughout the school year.CIS Six ComponentsThe Six Components are services which CIS implements in order to effectively assist students in achieving school success. Each component has specific state approved activities that correlate to the component. They are as follows:1. Supportive Guidance and Counseling: This service provides one on one support to the student to include goal setting for their academic success, this may also include support groups.2. Health and Human Services: Health related activities that include referrals for medical and wellness assistance and connection to various available services.3. Parental and Family Engagement Services and activities that support and help increase participation of parents and families in the student’s educational experience.4. College and Career Awareness: Services and activities that promote and encourage higher education, career awareness, job readiness, skills training and preparation for the workforce.5. Enrichment Activities: Activities that provide an opportunity to learn and bond with their families and the community. These activities promote social, cultural, and life skills through health fairs, field trips etc.6. Academic Enhancement and Support: These services support all educational areas as needed to promote students’ achievement and success. It could include homework assistance, short-term tutoring in reading and math, English and science as well as college readiness.Five CIS BasicsCIS of El Paso also believes that each individual should have the Five CIS Basics which are the core beliefs to success, and are incorporated throughout the delivery system. CIS of El Paso believes that every child needs and deserves:1. One-on-one relationship with a caring adult.2. Safe place to learn and grow.3. Healthy start and healthy future.4. Marketable skill to use upon graduation.5. Chance to give back to peers and community.The CIS Core ValuesThe CIS model incorporates three core values which are personalism, accountability and coordination. Personalism is provided by building and sustaining a one to one relationship with students and building relationships with key individuals such as families, community partners, school personnel etc. Accountability is provided through the CIS tracking Management System to record, track and report services. Coordination is provided by assessing the needs of the campus and students and then leveraging resources and brokering services that can be delivered at the school campus to meet those needs.