Report: San Antonio school dropout rate at 35%

Communities in Schools' dropout prevention programs key to success for at-risk students

SAN ANTONIO - Communities In Schools runs a program that teams at-risk students with mentors to help those kids make it to graduation day.

Next week, most San Antonio schools will open for another year of classes, but roughly 9,500 students won't make it to the end of the year. That's because the city's dropout rate is at a staggering 35 percent.

The good news, there are programs -- like the Communities in Schools program -- in place to help students graduate.

Recent Jefferson High School graduate Jonathan Delgado said he could have easily dropped out of school and become another statistic but he decided to stick it out and get his diploma, thanks to help from the CIS program.

"It helped me to figure out who I am, who I wanted to become, where I wanted to be in life. Basically what kind of person I wanted to be," Delgado said.

Growing up with a drug-addicted father and a mother battling depression, Delgado had plenty of obstacles to overcome when he was teamed up with mentor Kimberlee Morrison.

"He was doing wonderful, he just needed a little guidance as far as direction in where to go for college and how to get there and making sure he got to graduation," Morrison said.

Morrison began working with Delgado during his sophomore year, serving as his sounding board and guidance counselor to help him overcome the obstacles in his life.

"He really had the fire and desire to share with other students," Morrison said. "By his senior year, he was helping other students to recognize their own potential and recognize their goals."

Delgado is now preparing for his first semester at college. This week, he starts at Texas A&M Kingsville, where he plans to study criminology.

He also hopes to help keep other kids, including his younger sisters, on the right path.

"You can give a person the tools to build a house but it's to them whether or not they want to build their house," Delgado said.

Communities In Schools is funded by a partnership with P&G. Now in its second year, P&G's Give Education program is hoping to raise over $500,000 for dropout prevention programs. 

When you purchase $25 worth of select P&G products, you will get a $5 rebate in the mail and P&G will give CIS $5. 

You can also help fund the program by simply visiting the P&G Give Facebook page and hitting the "Like" button. P&G will donate $1 for every "Like" up to $10,000.

For a list of recent stories Tim Gerber has done, click here.


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