AUSTIN (KXAN) — Education advocates are asking for help when it comes to making sure students aren’t left behind.

Members of the nonprofit Communities in Schools rallied at the Capitol on Tuesday. The dropout prevention organization works to keep K-12 students in school by focusing on academics, attendance and mental health. In Texas, 58% of school aged students live in poverty, according to the nonprofit. Without support and funding, advocates said these students are at risk of missing school, dropping out, and failing to earn a high school diploma.

“The pandemic had a significant impact on kids not returning to school,” said Melvanci Robinson with the Baytown chapter. “So, when we returned after the pandemic, our whole goal was reengagement. How do we get these kids back in school?”

The organization has made “great strides” statewide, she said, but still has a “long way to go.”

The Central Texas chapter says it works directly with more than 100 elementary, middle, and high schools to deliver individually tailored and needed resources.