Giving Compass' Take:

• City Connects is a nonprofit that acts as a liaison for students and school districts by connecting families with community services that help students thrive. 

• How can donors help school districts address poverty-related achievement gaps? 

• Read about why poor school districts are often left stranded. 

At 85 schools in five states, nonprofit agency City Connects acts as a liaison between school districts and families who may need more assistance than the district can provide, connecting them to community partners that offer assistance, EdSurge reports.

City Connects has been around since 2001 and is funded through a mix of philanthropy, district money and government grants in its efforts to address the problem of poverty by providing a mix of enrichment, early intervention and crisis management.

Programs that connect low-income students and their families to community services can be vital links that help bridge poverty-related achievement gaps. In addition to City Connects, there are programs like Communities In Schools that also use school-based coordinators to bring in community resources and put at-risk students on the path to graduation.

Even if these gap-bridging services aren't available in a district, administrators could create their own liaison positions. A point person versed in available services could be a reliable conduit between a problem and solution. Many problems, like the absent student who didn’t have transportation to school from the shelter, are relatively easy fixes that just require someone dedicated to reaching out to a family and asking how they can help.

Read the full article about nonprofits helping bridge poverty-related achievement gaps by Shawna De La Rosa at Education Dive