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Communities In Schools of Richmond Receives $100,000 as Part of AT&T Aspire

RICHMOND, Va., Dec. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Civic and government leaders from the Richmond area today joined representatives from AT&T, Communities In Schools of Richmond (CIS-Richmond), the City of Richmond School District, and other local guests to announce a $100,000 contribution to CIS-Richmond as part of AT&T Aspire.

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The announcement was made at John Marshall High School in Richmond, one of five schools in Richmond where CIS-Richmond is working to reduce dropout rates.

CIS-Richmond is one of 47 Aspire recipients nationwide that together shared more than $10 million under AT&T Aspire this year, one of the largest corporate commitments focused on helping more students graduate from high school ready for college and careers.  AT&T announced an additional quarter-billion-dollar expansion to the program earlier this year, bringing the total commitment to $350 million since the program was launched in 2008. 

"Communities In Schools of Richmond is doing remarkable things to help students in the City stay in school and achieve their dreams," said Vince Apruzzese, regional vice president, AT&T- Virginia.  "Programs like this are essential to helping students succeed and to keeping Richmond – and our entire commonwealth – competitive."

Apruzzese added that through Aspire, AT&T has supported other organizations in the Commonwealth, including Communities In Schools of Virginia, a statewide organization.  In addition, in collaboration with Junior Achievement, students across Virginia have participated in job-shadowing events at AT&T facilities in the Commonwealth, giving students a chance to make the connection between school and the workplace.

Aspire applicants were evaluated based on their accomplishments in serving students at risk of dropping out of high school and their ability to use data to demonstrate the effectiveness of their work.  After a rigorous and competitive process, CIS-Richmond was identified as making a real difference in Richmond by supporting and motivating traditionally underserved students to stay in school and prepare for the next step in life.

According to Harold Fitrer, president and CEO of CIS-Richmond, the challenges are not small: more than 75 percent of Richmond Public Schools' students live below the poverty line.  Their struggles are significant – not because they lack ability, but because of the economic circumstances of their families.  High concentrations of poverty make the educational enterprise much more difficult for urban school systems, with the demand for resources far outweighing availability. 

"We are thrilled to work in partnership with AT&T to guide and support high school students toward graduation.  Our students face many challenges both inside and outside of the classroom.  The CIS model offers individualized and integrated services to help students address these barriers and achieve academic success," Fitrer said.

According to Fitrer, at each of the five neighborhood high schools, CIS of Richmond will fully implement the CIS Model; monitor and measure progress; and adjust intervention services to ensure that high school students improve academic achievement, strengthen positive behaviors, and increase attendance and school attachment. The work facilitated by CIS-Richmond over the 2013 and 2014 school years includes:

  • Needs assessment administered to teachers, students, parents, administrators, and staff to identify needs. This assessment assists staff in determining the level of community and professional services to mobilize in a school, which becomes an annual Action Plan.
  • Direct services to students managed by a Student Assistance Team (SAT). The SAT is staffed by CIS, school faculty, and repositioned staff from public and nonprofit agencies.  The team receives referrals on a regular basis and meets weekly to develop and coordinate services for targeted children and families.  Individual student action plans can include the assignment of a volunteer mentor, a regular home visitation, therapeutic day treatment and a referral to a CIS resource organization.
  • Monitoring and follow-up on outcomes of student plans in the school setting to include outreach to families.  The individualized, coordinated, and integrated team effort gives each student and family many of the services needed to solve social, educational, health, and emotional problems that impede school success.  Because all of this takes place at school, families do not have to negotiate a maze of services to meet needs.

Cautionary Language Concerning Forward-Looking Statements:

Information set forth in this news release contains financial estimates and other forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties, and actual results may differ materially. A discussion of factors that may affect future results is contained in AT&T's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. AT&T disclaims any obligation to update or revise statements contained in this news release based on new information or otherwise.

AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.

About AT&T

AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) is a premier communications holding company and one of the most honored companies in the world. Its subsidiaries and affiliates – AT&T operating companies – are the providers of AT&T services in the United States and around the world. With a powerful array of network resources that includes the nation's largest 4G network, AT&T is a leading provider of wireless, Wi-Fi, high speed Internet, voice and cloud-based services. A leader in mobile Internet, AT&T also offers the best wireless coverage worldwide of any U.S. carrier, offering the most wireless phones that work in the most countries. It also offers advanced TV services under the AT&T U-verse® and AT&T | DIRECTV brands. The company's suite of IP-based business communications services is one of the most advanced in the world.

Additional information about AT&T Inc. and the products and services provided by AT&T subsidiaries and affiliates is available at http://www.att.com. This AT&T news release and other announcements are available at http://www.att.com/newsroom and as part of an RSS feed at www.att.com/rss. Or follow our news on Twitter at @ATT.

© 2012 AT&T Intellectual Property. All rights reserved. 4G not available everywhere. AT&T, the AT&T logo and all other marks contained herein are trademarks of AT&T Intellectual Property and/or AT&T affiliated companies.

About Philanthropy at AT&T

AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) is committed to advancing education, strengthening communities and improving lives. Through its philanthropic initiatives, AT&T has a long history of supporting projects that create learning opportunities; promote academic and economic achievement; and address community needs. In 2011, more than $115 million was contributed through corporate-, employee- and AT&T Foundation-giving programs.

SOURCE AT&T Inc.

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