At 64 percent, the District's high school graduation rate is the lowest in the nation, a statistic rooted in poverty. Hunger, homelessness, teen pregnancy, gang violence – these are the challenges faced by the more than 30,000 youth living below the poverty line in DC. Communities in Schools steps in where the need is greatest, working in seven schools where 96% of students qualify for free or reduced lunch. Highly-trained, full-time site coordinators develop comprehensive drop-out prevention plans, coordinated with school staff, families, and community partners to fully support the “ABCs” of attendance, behavior, and coursework. Activities like college tours, field trips, career fairs, and community service projects are offered to all. Meanwhile, those most vulnerable to dropping out – teen mothers, homeless youth, foster children – receive targeted case management to meet personal needs and achieve academic goals. And it works. Last year, 90% of eligible seniors in CIS schools graduated, and DCPS is now one of the fastest improving districts in the nation. Saving our city’s young people is something we can do together.