Press Release

PRESS RELEASE: Hikvision and Citizen Schools Provide STEM Education to Students in Need

Hikvision and Citizen Schools Provide STEM Education to Students in Need

City of Industry, CA – May 26, 2015 – HikvisionÒ USA, North America’s leading provider of innovative, award-winning video surveillance products and solutions, has teamed up with Citizen Schools, a national nonprofit organization that partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for children in low-income communities.

Hikvision volunteers provided hands-on classroom opportunities for middle school students at Chase Elementary in Chicago, where the students learned about engineering design and built alternative energy vehicles. The ten-week semester culminated in a “WOW! Event” this month where students taught back what they learned to teachers, parents, and community members. As a technology leader, Hikvision is dedicated to supporting opportunities for STEM-based education (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) across North America.

Citizen Schools, which is celebrating its twentieth anniversary this year, has a rich history of enabling public middle schools in low-income communities to provide a longer learning day with enrichment opportunities for students. Volunteers called “Citizen Teachers” visit the classroom in the extended day each week to engage the students in activities they would not otherwise be able to participate in during the school day. Students gain knowledge in topics ranging from journalism to astronomy, leading toward what Citizen Schools CEO Steven Rothstein refers to as a “moment of discovery.”

“Igniting a moment of discovery means that the students feel empowered,” Mr. Rothstein said. “They build something: the rocket flies, they’ve cooked something for the first time, their financial plan shows how they could potentially afford to go to college. These opportunities are crucial for students in many urban areas around the country. By the time they have reached 6th grade, they typically receive 6000 fewer hours of academic and personal enrichment opportunities than students in higher-income communities.”

Citizen Teachers from Hikvision taught an engineering design course at Chase Elementary where the students built structures and vehicles, tested their load-bearing capacity, and then transferred that knowledge into an understanding of how alternative energy vehicles operate and how they will affect our society in the future.

“Coming into the classroom every week and seeing how excited the students got about what they were learning was an incredible experience,” remarked Ahmed Elsayed, a sales engineer for Hikvision USA who volunteered at Chase. “Their desire for knowledge was palpable and I’m proud to be part of a program that fostered that.”

In addition to volunteer hours spent in the classroom, Hikvision also made a financial donation to provide classroom supplies.

“As a forward-thinking technology leader, Hikvision understands that the next generation of scientists and engineers are sitting in our middle school classrooms today,” stated Jeffrey He, president of Hikvision USA and Hikvision Canada. “Educating these students so they can realize their full potential will lead to a more robust workforce and a broader landscape for the STEM-based industries of the future. Hikvision is honored to play a part in facilitating this fundamental conveyance of knowledge.”

To learn more about Citizen Schools, visit www.citizenschools.org.

For more information about Hikvision, visit booth 822 at the Electronic Security Expo (ESX), June 24-28, at the Baltimore Convention Center, or go to www.hikvision.com/en/us.

About Hikvision

Hikvision is the world’s largest supplier of video surveillance products and solutions. The company specializes in innovative video surveillance technology, as well as designing and manufacturing a full line of innovative CCTV and video surveillance products. Hikvision possesses the industry’s largest R&D team and state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities; both allow Hikvision’s customers the benefit of world-class products that are designed with cutting-edge technology. Hikvision USA is a subsidiary of Hikvision Digital Technology Co., Ltd.

About Citizen Schools

Citizen Schools is a national nonprofit organization that partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for children in low-income communities. Citizen Schools mobilizes a team of AmeriCorps educators and volunteer “Citizen Teachers” to teach real-world learning projects and provide academic support in order to help all students discover and achieve their dreams.

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Media contact:

Alex Asnovich, Director of Marketing, Hikvision USA

312-576-1025, Alex.Asnovich@hikvision.com

PRESS RELEASE: Walmart Grant Sparks Positive Outcomes in Adolescent Literacy

Media contact: Denise Olson, denise_olson@wgbh.org 617-300-3995

Report Shows Gains in Adolescent Literacy

Walmart Foundation grant prompts results in six programs for disadvantaged students

BOSTON, Massachusetts (May 19, 2015) – A report released today by WGBH Boston and five other organizations found significant increases in educational outcomes in literacy, based on programs they implemented with middle school students across the country.

Titled Telling Our Stories, the report (http://middleschoolsuccess.net/) profiles each organization’s research-driven solution to bridging gaps in adolescent literacy and improving education outcomes for disadvantaged students. The organizations are: BELL, Citizen Schools, City Year, Innovations in Civic Participation, National Summer Learning Association, and WGBH Boston.

The work of the six organizations was funded by a $33 million adolescent literacy grant from the Walmart (NYSE: WMT) Foundation.

“Walmart is dedicated to strengthening the communities it serves around the world. The Walmart Foundation grants profiled here have benefited thousands of students in the most disadvantaged schools in the country,” said Kathleen McLaughlin, CEO, Walmart Foundation. “These initiatives offer a rich collection of data-driven outcomes and best practices for leveling the educational playing field for all of our nation’s students.”

The Walmart Foundation selected the six organizations because of their successful track records in directly improving literacy outcomes for high-needs students, and each organization’s ability to build a program that would be scalable and sustainable over time. Each organization’s adolescent literacy program showed significant measurable increases in academic outcomes for participating students:

  • Four months of gains in math and two months of gains in literacy skills for BELL summer scholars in six weeks.
  • English Language arts proficiency in grades served by Citizen Schools extended learning time increased by an average of 4.2 points, and math proficiency increased by 6.2 points each year.
  • A full letter grade improvement in English language arts for 39% of sixth through ninth graders working with City Year in the 2012-2013 school year.
  • Expansion of Innovations in Civic Participation programs to over 600 at-risk students in seven communities.
  • An average gain in math of 4.1 months by NSLA Summer Advantage USA scholars in Chicago and Indianapolis, and an advancement rate of 94% to top college preparatory schools by scholars in Washington D.C.’s Higher Achievement Program.
  • An 8% increase in vocabulary for 300 students after completing just five WGBH-developed literacy lessons that were funded with the grant.

About BELL

BELL (Building Educated Leaders for Life) is a national non-profit organization that partners with schools and community organizations to expand learning time in the summer and after school.  BELL’s mission is to transform the academic achievements, self-confidence, and life trajectories of children living in under-resourced, urban communities.  More info at www.experiencebell.org.

About Citizen Schools

Citizen Schools is a national nonprofit organization that partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for children in low-income communities. Citizen Schools mobilizes a team of AmeriCorps educators and volunteer “Citizen Teachers” to teach real-world learning projects and provide academic support in order to help all students discover and achieve their dreams. For more information, please visit http://www.citizenschools.org/.

About City Year

City Year is dedicated to helping students and schools succeed. Diverse teams of City Year AmeriCorps members serve full-time in high-poverty urban schools, providing high-impact student, classroom, and school-wide support to help students stay in school and on track to graduate from high school, ready for college and career success.

A proud member of the AmeriCorps national service network, City Year is made possible by support from the Corporation for National and Community Service, school district partnerships, and private philanthropy from corporations, foundations and individuals.

Learn more at www.cityyear.org.

About Innovations in Civic Participation

Innovations in Civic Participation (ICP) is a global leader in the field of Youth Civic Engagement. ICP believes that well-structured youth service programs can provide innovative solutions to social and environmental issues, while helping young people develop skills for future employment and active citizenship. ICP carries out its mission through three main activities: 1) Incubating innovative models for youth service programs; 2) Assisting governmental and civil society organizations with the development of youth service programs and policies; and 3) Conducting research and serving as a source of information on youth civic engagement, especially national youth service and service-learning. Learn more at http://www.icicp.org/

About The National Summer Learning Association

The National Summer Learning Association (NSLA) is the only national nonprofit exclusively focused on closing the achievement gap by increasing access to high-quality summer learning opportunities. NSLA recognizes and disseminates what works, offers expertise and support for programs and communities, and advocates for summer learning as a solution for equity and excellence in education. NSLA’s work is driven by the belief that all children and youth deserve high-quality summer learning experiences that will help them succeed in college, career, and life. For more information, visit www.summerlearning.org.

About WGBH

WGBH Boston is America’s preeminent public broadcaster and the largest producer of PBS content for TV and the Web, including Frontline, Nova, American Experience, Masterpiece, Antiques Roadshow, Arthur, Curious George and more than a dozen other prime-time, lifestyle, and children’s series. WGBH also is a major supplier of programming for public radio, and oversees Public Radio International (PRI). As a leader in educational multimedia for the classroom, WGBH supplies content to PBS LearningMedia, a national broadband service for teachers and students. WGBH also is a pioneer in technologies and services that make media accessible to those with hearing or visual impairments. WGBH has been recognized with hundreds of honors. More info at www.wgbh.org.

PRESS RELEASE: White House Welcomes Citizen Schools and DigitasLBi 5th Grade Apprentice as Honored Guest at National Science Fair

White House Welcomes Citizen Schools And DigitasLBi 5th Grade Apprentice As Honored Guest At National Science Fair

BOSTON—March 23, 2015—The White House will welcome Toni-Chanelle Suncar, a 5th grader from Browne Middle School in Chelsea, Massachusetts as an honored guest at the 5th Annual White House Science Fair. Toni-Chanelle will be recognized for her leadership skills while participating in a three-month apprenticeship with Citizen Schools, a leading national education nonprofit, and DigitasLBi, a global marketing and technology company.

Since 2013, DigitasLBi Boston employees have taught seven apprenticeships focusing on marketing, creative arts, and Raspberry Pi technology, which teaches students components of computers and basic programming.

Toni-Chanelle received guidance and mentorship from MacCalvin Romain, DigitasLBi’s Senior Tech Analyst, while learning fundamental elements of programming during the ten-week program. Utilizing SCRATCH, a tool developed by MIT to teach basic computer coding skills, Toni-Chanelle created “Flappy Unicorn,” a single player game. In this game, players earn points by progressing through an obstacle course and avoiding challenges along the way.  Toni-Chanelle developed programming skills that allowed her and her teammates to customize the game (game coloring, sound bites, and point structure), de-bug it as problems arise, and make changes in real-time.

The White House Science Fair hosts incredible inventions from some of America’s youngest scientists and engineers and will be live streamed on today, March 23 at 10am at wh.gov/science-fair.

The White House Science Fair will feature remarks from President Obama, and will give participants the opportunity to interact with other talented students, senior Administration officials, and leading science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) communicators, advocates, and educators from across the country.

Hosted by President Obama, the Fair will feature innovative projects, designs, and experiments from students all across America. With students from a broad range of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) competitions, this year’s Fair will also include a focus on diversity and inclusion in STEM fields.

About Citizen Schools

Citizen Schools is a national nonprofit organization that partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for children in low-income communities. Citizen Schools mobilizes a team of AmeriCorps educators and volunteer “Citizen Teachers” to teach real-world learning projects and provide academic support in order to help all students discover and achieve their dreams. For more information, please visithttp://www.citizenschools.org/

About DigitasLBi

DigitasLBi is a global marketing and technology agency that transforms businesses for the digital age. We help companies of all shapes and sizes decide What’s Next… and then we take them there. Also a top ten global agency, DigitasLBi is comprised of 6,000 digital and technology experts across 40 offices in 25 countries worldwide.
 
DigitasLBi is a member of Publicis Groupe, [listed on the Euronext Paris Exchange – FR0000130577 – and part of the CAC 40 index] the world’s third largest communications group. With approximately 60,000 professionals spanning 108 countries on five continents, Publicis Groupe offers local and international clients a complete range of communications services. http://www.publicisgroupe.com @PublicisGroupe

PRESS RELEASE: Jones Day Foundation Pledges Support to Citizen Schools to Expand STEM Programs Nationally

CITIZEN SCHOOLS CONTACT: Holly Trippett, (617) 695-2300 x1161, Cell: (301)-452-3904, hollytrippett@citizenschools.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

JONES DAY FOUNDATION PLEDGES SUPPORT TO CITIZEN SCHOOLS TO EXPAND STEM PROGRAMS NATIONALLY

Boston, MA– February 9, 2015—Citizen Schools, a leading national education nonprofit, today announced new support from the Jones Day Foundation to expand its science, technology, education and math (STEM) programs across the country. AmeriCorps educators and volunteer “Citizen Teachers” teach real-world learning projects and provide academic support in order to help all students discover and achieve their dreams.

Citizen Schools partners with underserved public middle schools to dramatically expand the learning day by 400 hours each academic year. During the additional school hours, the organization mobilizes AmeriCorps Teaching Fellows and corporate volunteers from firms like Jones Day who provide academic support and teach hands-on “apprenticeships” that help students make the connection between what they are learning now and a future career path. More than half of the skill-building apprenticeships are focused on STEM subjects and activities.

The Jones Day Foundation investment will allow Citizen Schools to provide middle school students with authentic learning experiences and access to STEM experts who can spark a lifelong interest in the subjects. The support will also help the organization build a rich library of curriculum for STEM apprenticeships that develop essential academic and 21st century skills, meet the needs of diverse learners, and maximize the talents of volunteers who also learn in the process.

“Real-world apprenticeship projects bring relevance and unique learning opportunities to students, igniting new interests and increasing engagement in the classroom,” said Steven M. Rothstein, CEO of Citizen Schools. “We are pleased to have the Jones Day Foundation as a partner as we work to advance and expand our STEM programs for the students and schools we serve to improve math proficiency and ensure a more diverse 21st century workforce.”

”The Jones Day Foundation is designed to make transformative gifts to address needs throughout the world,” said Lizanne Thomas, a partner in Jones Day’s Atlanta office and President of the Jones Day Foundation. “Supporting Citizen Schools, which shares our vision and mission of transformation, is a perfect fit for the Foundation.”

“Since opening in Boston in 2011, Jones Day has been active in the Boston charitable and civic community,” said Traci Lovitt, Partner-in-Charge of Jones Day’s Boston office. “We are honored to partner with organizations like Citizen Schools. Spending time with the Edwards Middle School students in Boston through Citizen Schools has been a great experience, and we look forward to continuing to work with these wonderful children and Citizen Schools.”

For the past two spring semesters Jones Day employees have taught law apprenticeships to 6th grade students at Edwards Middle School in Boston, MA. Working side-by-side with Jones Day lawyers, students transform into trial and appellate court lawyers, arguing their cases at Moakley Court House at the end of each spring semester.

About Citizen Schools

Citizen Schools is a national nonprofit organization that partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for children in low-income communities. Citizen Schools mobilizes a team of AmeriCorps educators and volunteer “Citizen Teachers” to teach real-world learning projects and provide academic support in order to help all students discover and achieve their dreams. For more information, please visit http://www.citizenschools.org/.

About The Jones Day Foundation

The Jones Day Foundation, established in 1987, is a nonprofit organization funded by Jones Day’s lawyers and staff. The Foundation’s mission is to financially support efforts that include promoting the rule of law in developing countries, fostering innovation in academics, medicine and the arts, improving the living conditions and economic opportunities for people in impoverished settings (particularly children and women), and providing support and comfort to people suffering from natural and other disasters around the world.

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PRESS RELEASE: Biogen Idec Foundation Pledges Additional Support to Citizen Schools to Advance STEM Education

CITIZEN SCHOOLS CONTACT: Holly Trippett, (617) 695-2300 x1161, Cell: (301)-452-3904, hollytrippett@citizenschools.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

BIOGEN IDEC FOUNDATION PLEDGES ADDITIONAL SUPPORT TO CITIZEN SCHOOLS TO ADVANCE STEM EDUCATION

The $1.5 Million Investment Will Allow the Organization to Scale Programming Nationally; Company named “National Innovation Partner”

Boston, MA– January 26, 2015—Citizen Schools, a national nonprofit organization that partners with public middle schools to expand the learning day for underserved students, today announced a new Biogen Idec Foundation grant to support its science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) programs, and has named the Biogen Idec Foundation its first National Innovation Partner.

Based on a shared commitment to sparking students’ interest in science through hands-on experiences, the Biogen Idec Foundation will help launch the next phase of Citizen Schools’ national STEM strategy to improve and scale the hands-on apprenticeship model for STEM learning in Massachusetts and North Carolina and at the national level.

The $1.5 million, three-year investment will allow Citizen Schools to provide thousands of middle school students with real-world learning opportunities led by volunteer professionals and will also support a STEM curriculum development and a randomized evaluation by leading evaluation firm Abt Associates. The analysis will test whether providing STEM-focused apprenticeships leads to increased STEM interest and achievement in math and science for middle school students.

The Biogen Idec Foundation has supported Citizen Schools since 2008, providing more than $250,000 in grants to support the organization’s STEM apprenticeship programs in Boston, MA and Research Triangle Park, NC.

“The best way to engage students in the STEM subjects is by providing exciting, hands-on learning experiences with experts, like Biogen Idec scientists, who can show them what’s possible beyond the classroom,” said Steven Rothstein, CEO of Citizen Schools. “We are incredibly grateful for The Biogen Idec Foundation’s support as we work to improve educational opportunities for students in low-income communities across the country.”

“The Biogen Idec Foundation and Citizen Schools share an ongoing commitment to spark student’s interests in science through hands-on experiences and exposure to a variety of career pathways,” said Tony Kingsley, chairman of the Biogen Idec Foundation. “We are proud to serve as the first National Innovation Partner and work to improve educational opportunities and long-term success for underserved students.”

As a National Innovation Partner, the Biogen Idec Foundation will extend the innovative work of the Biogen Idec Community Lab from Massachusetts to North Carolina. The combination of Biogen’s unique apprenticeships, commitment to STEM curriculum, and rigorous evaluation is poised to transform Citizen Schools’ STEM programs.

Since 2008, 37 Biogen Idec employees have taught nine apprenticeships in Massachusetts and North Carolina. Biogen Idec-led STEM apprenticeships help students transform into junior scientists at the Community Lab. The students conduct experiments side-by-side with Biogen Idec scientists, using the same state-of-the-art equipment and tools that the scientists utilize to discover and create new medicine. The apprenticeships introduce students to practical applications of their academics and introduce careers they might not have known existed.

Citizen Schools partners with public middle schools nationally to expand the school day for children in underserved communities through academic mentoring and skill-building apprenticeships. The projects foster authentic learning experiences and are taught by volunteer professionals, or Citizen Teachers, who share their expertise and passions in engaging and innovative ways. Citizen Schools’ focus on math and science based apprenticeships are helping to improve math proficiency levels and ensure a more diverse 21st century workforce skilled in the STEM job sectors.

About Citizen Schools
Citizen Schools is a national nonprofit organization that partners with middle schools to expand the learning day for children in low-income communities. Citizen Schools mobilizes a team of AmeriCorps educators and volunteer “Citizen Teachers” to teach real-world learning projects and provide academic support in order to help all students discover and achieve their dreams. For more information, please visit http://www.citizenschools.org/.

About The Biogen Idec Foundation
The Biogen Idec Foundation’s mission is to improve the quality of peoples’ lives and contribute to the vitality of the communities in which the company operates, with a special emphasis on innovative ways to promote science literacy and encourage young people to consider science careers. Additional information about the Biogen Idec Foundation can be found at: www.biogenidec.com/foundation

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