From the Clean Slate campaign, Oct. 21: First-time City Council candidates Dennis Carlone, Janneke House and Nadeem Mazen – running together as the Clean Slate in the Nov. 5 election – announced Monday that they support an increase in staffing for the Community Schools program under the City’s Department of Human Services and will be advocates for increased funding upon their election to the council.

“After-school enrichment programs are a priority for us, and we are proposing that the City Council recommend to the city manager that the next fiscal year’s budget reflect an increase in staff support  for the Community School programs operating in the city,” Carlone said. “The return on investment from the Community Schools programs is high, and we should be helping other programs to leverage their funds in similar ways.”

According to the city’s website, Community Schools provide a network of neighborhood-based services offering educational, cultural, social and recreational opportunities for all age groups, including students, adults, seniors and families. They include summer camps and Arts in the Parks programs and work with residents and local institutions to provide services and activities that enhance learning, creative expression and health. These programs also aim to foster a sense of community.

“Integrated, multigenerational neighborhood services maximize the return on our tax dollars and build stronger community.  Families, adults and seniors benefit greatly from this program, and we’re proud to be supporting it,” House said.

“Offering the Community Schools programs to our residents is one of the things that makes Cambridge so special,” Mazen said. “They thoroughly integrate the arts across generations and celebrates our diverse city. Adding staff to support the program will benefit all the Community Schools – a great way to make sure families stay in Cambridge and thrive.”

The Clean Slate candidates stress the need for voters to turn out to the polls Nov. 5 and to vote Clean Slate No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3 to maximize the chances that challengers are elected over incumbents.