Community Based Services

Closing the Gap School Program

Closing the Gap School Program is a collaborative initiative serving students at six Buffalo public schools. The schools involved in the initiative were originally recognized as having below-average performance and are located in areas where many students live at or below the poverty level. The goal of the program is to meet the non-academic needs facing these students through in-school resource centers that help connect students and their families with the appropriate community resources. By addressing these non-academic barriers, the program helps students and their families overcome life’s obstacles to achieve academic and personal success.

Closing the Gap helps improve academic achievement and attendance by staffing individuals from local health and human service organizations, like Child and Family Services at various schools. At the same time, staff strives to decrease disciplinary referrals and formal/informal suspensions by addressing these non-academic barriers facing students and families.

Program Funding

Closing the Gap is a partnership between numerous local organizations, foundations, corporations, including: the United Way of Buffalo and Erie County, Buffalo Public School District, Erie County Department of Mental Health, Erie County Department of Social Services, Kaleida Health System, Catholic Health System and Catholic Charities. A variety of local health and human service providers, including Child & Family Services, work with site facilitators to coordinate services for children and their families.

Areas Served

Closing the Gap currently serves students and their families in pre-kindergarten through eighth grade at six Buffalo Public Schools: #27 Hillery Park (where Child and Family Services staff is currently located), #30 Frank A. Sedita, #53 Community School, #74 Hamlin Park School, #94 West Hertel Academy and #97 Harvey Austin School.

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