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Citizen Schools - New Jersey



Citizen Schools is a leading not-for-profit that specializes in middle school afterschool education in urban areas. In New Jersey, Citizen Schools has forged strong parterships with New Brunswick Public Schools and Newark Public Schools in creating meaningful afterschool activities that connect students to the resources and people in their community, putting students on a trajectory towards success.

Since 1995 Citizen Schools has built a creative and effective learning model that addresses community needs while building student skills through hands-on experiential learning activities. Citizen Schools operates a National Network of apprenticeship programs for youth that connects middle school students with adult volunteers in hands-on learning. At Citizen Schools, students develop the academic and leadership skills they need to do well in school, get into college, and become leaders in their careers and in their communities. We currently enroll 2,000 middle-school students and engage 1,500 volunteers at 24 school campus sites nationwide.

Our goal is to prepare students for leadership roles in the 21st century. To achieve this goal, Citizen Schools has identified four important objectives for students' success:

Strengthen academic skills Develop personal leadership skills Facilitate access to resources Build community connections

Our learning model includes Apprenticeships, Explorations, Homework Investment Time, and Team-building activities. Citizen Schools focuses on skill development - particularly in the areas of writing, data analysis, and oral communication - and links closely to school activities and learning standards. Citizen Schools turns children into community heroes: children apprentice with lawyers, web designers, architects - culminating their learning apprenticeships by arguing trials before federal judges, designing web sites for their school, organizing public events, publishing newspapers, and much more.

Our volunteers, called Citizen Teachers, work with our student apprentices over the course of 13 weeks, 1.5 hours per week. Citizen Teachers are trained by our staff, and work side-by-side with our paid staff to share what they know and love.

Apprenticeships culminate in adult-quality products or presentations that add positive value to the community, while putting students in a position where they become meaningful producers and emerging leaders in their communities.

It is amazing what you can accomplish in an afternoon...

Mission: Educating youth, strengthening communities...
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