Are you passionate about making an impact in your city? Are you looking for best practices and evidence-based solutions from other cities? Do you want to hear first-hand accounts from other citizens working on the very same issues you are?

Now's your chance to learn from the citizen problem-solvers in other cities who are making an impact. 

The Citizens Campaign and NJ Spotlight have partnered to bring you the City Spotlight Forum -- an online platform to share best practices and ideas for building stronger, healthier and more resilient communities. 

Our first forum is dedicated to urban education issues. 

On the question "What can we as a community do to help our youth achieve their potential in school and beyond? What are successful schools doing that other schools should consider adopting?" user crisr says:

There are many things we know can be done to help our youth achieve their potential. Making quality pre-K accessible to all students, ensuring safe facilities, and mandating equitable funding for our schools are all in-school priorities. However, if we truly aim to make a difference, we need fight for out-of-school factors. Evidence shows the impact of poverty in our classrooms is overwhelming. Housing reform, economic and environmental justice, and accessible health care all need to be part of the equation.

On the question "How can we better intervene to support struggling students at risk for dropping out?" user classics shared their own best practice:

Classics Used and Rare Books raises store credit and money to make books available for all Trenton kids. In a struggling school district, this is one thing everybody can do to help kids succeed. Click here for information on one such study printed in Science Daily--http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100520213116.htm

On the question "What kind of after-school programs does your city have? How could they be improved?" user tifo poses this problem in need of a solution: 

There are some promising programs in our schools related to sports, arts and tutoring, but the access to them can sometimes be difficult. Often times, they may be far away from a children's neighborhood or school and they may not have the transportation to get there. Or, they may be during odd hours when their parents are unable to pick them up or at a time when they have other responsibilities.

Visit the City Spotlight Forum now and log on to join these citizen problem-solvers in making an impact in our cities.

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