For the past four years, Calhoun County has been a proud participant in the Communities In Schools (CIS) program. Since its launch in 2019, all of the schools in the county have embraced CIS, each aiming for specific achievements: improved academics, improved attendance, and improved behavior among students.
At the heart of Calhoun County’s CIS success lies its dedicated team of SIte Coordinators. With four Site Coordinators, their impact is far-reaching. Brittany Parsons is the Site Coordinator at Arnoldsburg Elementary, while Carrie Collins is the Site Coordinator at Pleasant Hill Elementary. Both have been working as a Site Coordinator for three years.
Kevin Boak is the Site Coordinator at Calhoun County Middle-High School and has been working as a Site Coordinator for one year. Assisting them all is Charlotte Squires, the county’s Lead Site Coordinator, holding four years of experience with the CIS program.
These Site Coordinators form an essential pillar of student support. Beyond academics, they offer crucial resources, essential supplies, and a listening ear to each student. By providing the tools for success and addressing basic needs, the program is making a tangible difference in the students’ lives, empowering them to reach their full potential.
Understanding immediate student needs, Calhoun County’s CIS program established a fully equipped school store. It offers clothing, food, hygiene products, and school supplies free of charge, ensuring students have essential items.
The support extends beyond the students to their families. Each Site Coordinator finds joy in connecting with students and their families, with CIS family engagement events as a rewarding highlight of their job. They have hosted various successful events like the "Pumpkin Patch", “Pancakes and Pajamas,” and “Spring Fling” - each event drawing an average of 300-500 participants!
Calhoun County’s CIS program has brought remarkable change. In the last academic year, Site Coordinators focused heavily on parental involvement and attendance incentives, yielding an impressive 5% decrease in chronically absent students - a significant achievement. Family engagement events united families in many ways offering unique experiences for students.