Citizen Schools California

Citizen Schools Apprenticeship Culminates in Robotics Competition

Citizen Schools Apprenticeship Culminates in Robotics Competition

A team of five intrepid students from Fischer Renaissance participated in a FIRST LEGO League (FLL) Qualifier tournament at Santa Clara High School November 11, 2018 as part of a Citizen School Apprenticeship.  Lead by by a team of mentors, and Americorps members James Wesselman (myself) and Jamila Mentuhotep (Citizen Schools Teaching Fellows), the team finished the fun filled day ranking 6th in the robot game outperforming experienced better funded teams.  

AmeriCorps Member Spotlight: Liam McCarthy

AmeriCorps Member Spotlight: Liam McCarthy

At Citizen Schools, no role is more essential to the success of our students than that of the AmeriCorps Teaching Fellow. Citizen Schools National Teaching Fellows create extraordinary enrichment and academic support experiences for the students we serve the nation. On a daily basis, Fellows deepen connections between schools and parents, help to develop social-emotional skills through mentoring and coaching students, and facilitate hands-on learning opportunities through our apprenticeships

Sowing the seeds of community, healthful living in East San Jose

Sowing the seeds of community, healthful living in East San Jose

Fresh from a visit to the greenhouse and a bit of weeding in a row of radishes and pumpkins, 18 youngsters gathered to show what they’d soaked up during their field trip to the Veggielution organic farm in San Jose.

Women’s Audio Mission: Volunteer Spotlight

Women’s Audio Mission: Volunteer Spotlight

This semester, San Francisco-based nonprofit Women’s Audio Mission (WAM) partnered with Citizen Schools to teach apprenticeships at two of our middle schools in Oakland: Roots Academy and Greenleaf.  The apprenticeship, called Girls on the Mic, educates girls about audio technology, recording and sound engineering through music and media. The goal of the program is to drive girls’ interest in STEM and introduce them to technology-based careers in a traditionally male-dominated field.

AmeriCorps Member Spotlight: Andrew Luck

AmeriCorps Member Spotlight: Andrew Luck

1.Why did you decide to become an AmeriCorps VISTA?

I became an AmeriCorps VISTA because I wanted to go a different direction with my professional life and gain an experience that I would not have anywhere else.

Introducing Citizen Schools' New Development Coordinator, Wesley Thompson!

Introducing Citizen Schools' New Development Coordinator, Wesley Thompson!

Citizen Schools California welcomed a new staff member, Wesley Thompson, Development Coordinator. Wesley will work to create new partnerships and strengthen existing relationships with foundations and individuals who share Citizen Schools California’s goal of expanding opportunity to all Bay Area middle school students.

TI's "Power of STEM Education" grants total $5.4 million in 2016 to improve STEM learning and teaching

DALLAS-- Texas Instruments (TI) (TXN) announced today that its corporate and foundation grants to improve kindergarten through 12th grade science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education will total $5.4 million in 2016.

TI and the Texas Instruments Foundation have committed "Power of STEM Education" (POSE) grants to a variety of nonprofit partners and educators in targeted communities across the U.S. where the company has a major design or manufacturing presence, including California, Maine and Texas. Giving is focused on collaborative strategies to improve student success and teaching effectiveness in STEM education.  Special emphasis is given to programs that reach female and minority students who are underrepresented in science and engineering careers today.

"Our focus is on collaborative strategies to improve teaching effectiveness and student success in STEM education," said Andy Smith, executive director of the TI Foundation and TI director of corporate philanthropy.  "We seek out effective partners who share our goals, make strategic investments and develop long-term relationships with educators and their organizations to support proven, successful programs that can be scaled and replicated. Working together, we believe all students can move forward and experience greater success in STEM."

Among the largest are these new TI Foundation grants in North Texas:

  • $1.7 million to Southern Methodist University to train up to 216 Dallas Independent School District (ISD) middle school science teachers over the next four years with the potential to reach up to 46,000 students. Cohorts begin in summer 2017.
  • $1.3 million to Teach for America to support 60 math and science teachers in Dallas ISD and Uplift Education schools (in addition to 160 previously funded by the TI Foundation);
  • $1.1 million to the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) for the College Readiness Program that provides teacher training and mentoring for Advanced Placement® (AP)® courses, student support through study sessions, and financial awards for students and teachers for qualifying scores of 3 or higher (on a five-point scale) on AP exams. Two grants have been awarded:  a one-year grant to expand the program to all high schools in Garland ISD and a three-year grant to launch the program in two Uplift Education high schools.  NMSI estimates that TI Foundation support of this program in Dallas ISD since 2001 has positively impacted nearly 400 teachers and over 80,000 AP students (including about 20,000 who earned qualifying scores on AP exams and received awards).  The TI Foundation has also provided grants to support this program in some other North Texas schools previously, i.e. some Garland ISD schools (2015 – 2017), Mesquite ISD (2012 - 2015), Richardson ISD (2014-2016); and Lancaster ISD (2013 – 2016).

Additional TI Foundation grants will be allocated to:

  • Teaching Trust for a one-year training program for Dallas ISD campus leadership teams;
  • the Dallas, Garland, Lancaster, Mesquite, Plano and Richardson school district foundations to continue to honor outstanding STEM teachers with the annual Innovations in STEM Teaching Awards in 2017;
  • the University of Texas at San Antonio to support 500 students in the TexPREP (Texas Pre-freshman Engineering Program) program in Dallas ISD; and
  • the National Alliance for Partnerships in Equity (NAPE) for a three-year gender equity teaching training program in West Mesquite High School.

In addition to the $4.8 million from the TI Foundation, POSE grants from the corporation and TI Community Fund (a donor-advised fund with the Silicon Valley Community Foundation) will total almost $549,000. These grants have a special emphasis on employee engagement, such as volunteering and mentoring students.

TI's commitment to education, which dates back to the company's inception, remains its highest priority for employee volunteerism as well as for corporate and foundation giving.

"Education is a top passion for TI employees," Smith said.  "We invest where we can also involve TI volunteers to make an even greater impact. Last year TI employees worldwide volunteered more than 130,000 hours, many of these for education."

North Texas

TI's other new Dallas-area POSE grants will go this year to After-School All-Stars North Texas, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas, Boys & Girls Clubs of Collin County, Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas, Girls Inc., Reading Partners, and Real School Gardens.

Bay Area, California

New TI POSE grants in Santa Clara and the surrounding area will fund partnerships with Across the Bridge Foundation (Downtown College Prep), Alearn, Breakthrough Silicon Valley, Citizen Schools California, Girl Scouts of Northern California, Resource Area for Teaching, We Teach Science, Girls Who Code and the Youth Science Institute.

In addition, two grants ($325,000 each over three years) announced in 2015 will continue for their second year.  One grant funds a collaboration between the New Teacher Center and Resource Area for Teaching for in-depth training of middle-school science lead teachers, while the second grant funds a partnership of the Silicon Valley Education Foundation (SVEF), East Side Union High School District and Santa Clara County Office of Education to expand SVEF's successful Elevate [Math] and Elevate [Science] program to 10th and 11th grades.

South Portland Maine

New TI POSE grants in Maine will support programs with the Gulf of Maine Research Institute, Learning Works, and the Maine Mathematics and Science Alliance.

In addition a $150,000 three-year grant announced last year will continue for its second year.  This grant funds a collaborative program between the state's two largest school districts, the South Portland School District and Portland School District to implement a STEM Academy for 8th, 9th and 10th grade students in both districts.  The academy will focus on minority and female students.

For more information about TI's support of education please see or read about TI's 2015 giving to education in the Corporate Citizenship Report here.

About Texas Instruments

Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) is a global semiconductor design and manufacturing company that develops analog ICs and embedded processors.  By employing the world's brightest minds, TI creates innovations that shape the future of technology.  TI is helping more than 100,000 customers transform the future, today.  Learn more at