AISR's Community Organizing & Engagement staff provide research, training, and logistical support to parent and youth organizing groups in NYC, particularly the New York City Coalition for Educational Justice (CEJ), a citywide coalition of parents and community groups organizing for equity and excellence in the public schools, and the Urban Youth Collaborative (UYC), a citywide coalition of youth organizing groups.

Through a combination of grassroots mobilization, strategic alliance building with key stakeholders, and collaboration with the New York City Department of Education, CEJ, UYC, and their member organizations have had significant successes in focusing attention and resources on improving the city’s low-performing schools, college readiness, and positive school climate. Some of these successes include helping to win the creation of 150 community schools, the adoption of a new school discipline code that reduces the use of suspensions for non-criminal violations and for K-2nd grade students, improved reporting from the city on disciplinary actions in schools, the expansion of research-based models for parent engagement and increased time for parent-teacher conferences, the creation of student-led college access centers, and the creation of the Middle School Quality Initiative, including expanded learning time in 20 schools. 

With strategic and technical support from AISR staff, CEJ and UYC continue to push New York City and State around respect and dignity, college access, and a culturally responsive education for all students and familiies.