"Nationally, fewer than half of the minority males who enter 9th grade complete high school. The cycle of disenfranchisement plays itself out in increased incarceration rates, broken families, separation from communities and lack of economic development."What is a Linkage Coordinator?A Linkage Coordinator is a mentor, life coach, motivator and advocate, employed by the school district, who is placed in the targeted schools to improve the students' overall outlook on the value of their education through positive decision-making, accountability and addressing their social needs. The Linkage Coordinators work in collaboration with the parents, teachers, administrators and community to advocate for students by linking them to the services they require.
Why does the program not include girls?
The program originated focusing on males due to the national studies which indicated that males are not finishing high school in epidemic proportions. Minority males are dropping out of high school at even more alarming rates and are at greater risk for poverty, unemployment, and incarceration. However, currently the program does include girls with certain interventions when additional funding has been identified for targeted schools.Why is the focus on 9th graders?Ninth grade was identified as a crucial period because it is the first time in a student's educational experience they have to earn credits to be promoted to the next grade. Research shows that getting to the 10th grade is critical if a student wants to increase their chances of graduating from high school. While it may appear that students are dropping out after having spent two and three years in high school, the actuality is that the students more than likely never attained enough credits to truly be classified as a 10th grader.How can a student get involved?Most students are targeted by reviewing their 8th grade academic records. If they have exhibited at least one of four risk factors associated with dropping out of school then they are targeted for the program.Why is this program necessary?The crisis that exists with minority dropouts has been labeled a "natural catastrophe." Nationally, fewer than half of the minority males who enter 9th grade complete high school. The cycle of disenfranchisement plays itself out in increased incarceration rates, broken families, separation from communities and lack of economic development.Once a Student shows improvement will they remain in the program?Once a student becomes a CTAG student they remain a CTAG student until they graduate high school. They are expected to become a peer mentor for their younger classmates.Is this program in every high school?This targeted program is in 9 CMSD High Schools. The following schools have Linkage Coordinators through the CTAG Program:
- East Technical*
- James F. Rhodes
- John Adams
- John F. Kennedy
- John Marshall
- Martin Luther King Jr.
* Indicates schools with a female component.How can I get involved?The CTAG Program and CMSD will always welcome and encourage the community's participation in educating our students. This engagement can be in the form of partnerships. For more information or to find out how to engage or support the CTAG Program, please email: CTAG@ClevelandMetroSchools.org.