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Future of Work
Seeking answers to the big question: Are students ready to thrive after graduation?
January 26, 2016
College center, first of its kind in Aurora, puts students on path for life after high school
The center at Hinkley High School, the first of its kind in Aurora Public Schools, is supposed to take away the element of surprise when applying for college.
no holds barred
January 21, 2016
Aurora Central grad: ‘Stop feeling sorry’ for poor kids
Former Aurora Central student advocates for better student-teacher relationships and college prep courses.
a season of searching
January 6, 2016
A dream to leave Brooklyn, play football, and go to college — with applications in the way
A semester in the life of an Eagle Academy senior trying to figure out his next steps.
December 10, 2015
First step taken toward student choice in high school equivalency exams
State education officials have the green light to negotiate with three companies that offer high school equivalency tests, potentially offering more choice for students.
December 1, 2015
Report on black students finds ‘jaw-dropping’ gap between graduation rate and college readiness in Tennessee
A new report on opportunities for the nation’s African-American students lists Tennessee among the top five states for graduating its black students, but among the…
November 19, 2015
For a better life, Colorado teenagers travel to Wyoming to take a test
State data suggest that more people are discouraged from completing the GED since the test was rewritten.
September 29, 2015
Latino Memphis program aims to prepare undocumented Hispanic students for college
A growing program of the nonprofit advocacy group is helping Hispanic students graduate from high school, apply to college, and figure out how to pay for tuition.
September 16, 2015
Indiana high school senior to U.S. Secretary of Education: Help me get to college
Ben Davis University High School Senior Rosa Ramos Ochoa was sure she earned a 21st Century scholarship. And she had a Social Security number. But she was still left out.
the education agenda
September 16, 2015
Looking beyond pre-K, de Blasio unveils wide-ranging education agenda with big goals
Mayor Bill de Blasio’s agenda-setting speech Wednesday could have been titled: What comes after pre-K? In a word, his answer was college.
September 16, 2015
Parents, educators worry new diploma options exclude kids with special needs
Parents and educators are concerned that Indiana students don't have equal access to the high school diplomas that fit them best.
Making diplomas mean something
September 9, 2015
State board finally gives approval to grad guidelines
The State Board of Education Wednesday voted 6-1 to approve a revised menu of choices school districts will use to set their requirements for high school graduation.
August 26, 2015
Tennessee’s average ACT scores mostly stagnant
Despite efforts to increase student achievement, the average Tennessee ACT composite score is below the threshold for college readiness.
Ready or not
August 26, 2015
College readiness levels up slightly, new report finds
The percentage of 2015 high school graduates prepared for college is modestly above levels of prior years, according to a new report by the ACT testing organization.
Help with college
August 25, 2015
Denver City Council approves sending scholarship initiative to voters
The Denver City Council voted Monday night to ask voters in November to approve sales tax to bankroll a college scholarship and loan repayment program.
return on investment
August 21, 2015
As charter students head to college, schools ask, how’d we do?
Achievement First is seeking feedback from its pioneering high school graduates about how its high school model stacked up.
Put to the test
August 5, 2015
Data from ACT and DPS shows that Hispanic students aren’t college ready
A majority of U.S. Hispanic students planned to enroll in college last year, but nearly half weren’t ready for college level courses, according to a report from ACT.
July 27, 2015
Students in college readiness program say they find more than academic support
Local students participated in the AVID Summer Institute, a national conference for educators who teach college-readiness skills, in Denver this month.
There's an AP for that
July 17, 2015
At summer seminar, teachers learn advanced courses aren’t just for some
About 500 teachers participated in the AP for All Summer Institute, a program that emphasizes that advanced classes should be open to all students.
July 6, 2015
Locked out of a general diploma, some grads are blocked from jobs
With just a 'certificate of completion' grads often are shut out of jobs.
oh the places you will go
June 4, 2015
Colorado Hispanic, African-American students still struggle at collegiate level, report finds
Many of the state’s K-12 education reform laws aim to get more black and Latino students to college. But once those students arrive, they’re having a difficult time.
December 16, 2014
New rules push high schools to better prepare kids for college
House Enrolled Act 1005 was designed to get schools to more quickly determine which students were in need of academic help so they didn’t graduate behind grade-level. Passed in May 2013, the bill has schools test students in their junior year and then remediate the next year, with the hope that they won't enter college having to take remedial classes that grant no credits but cost just as much as for-credit courses.
November 18, 2014
Report: Path to top colleges for low-income kids is smoother in affluent districts
Low-income students in some of Colorado’s more affluent school districts—Boulder, Cherry Creek, and St. Vrain Valley—are more likely to attend top colleges than their peers around the state. But across the…
There's no "we" in personalized learning
November 5, 2014
Report: How 23 charter schools have ‘personalized’ learning
A new report from the Gates Foundation says that personalized learning programs may be boosting students' test scores—even as it tries to define what, exactly, personalized learning looks like.
Call to action
August 27, 2014
STEM push called vital to state’s economic future
Lack of a “statewide vision” and strategy for STEM education “is impeding Colorado’s ability to develop a strong local talent pipeline needed for an innovation economy,” according to a new Colorado STEM Education Roadmap.
July 21, 2014
NYC signs onto Obama’s push to give young minority men a lift
New York City is among 60 of the nation’s largest urban school districts that are pledging to help President Barack Obama push an initiative to improve…
June 26, 2014
Incoming high school freshmen get taste of college life
For about 55 Denver incoming high school freshman, the idea of using engineering software and a 3-D printer to transform their drawings into three-dimensional models seemed…
June 23, 2014
Statewide graduation rates tick up for most students, but not English learners
Statewide four-year graduation rates crept up by almost a percentage point in 2013, from 74 percent to 74.9 percent. And while more students from almost every demographic group are graduating high school on time in New York, the state's English language learner population was a glaring exception.
May 15, 2014
Fewer Colorado students need college catch-up classes
For the second year in a row, the number of Colorado students who enter college needing remedial classes dropped. College remediation rates fell to 37…
May 6, 2014
State launches STEM scholarship for SUNY, CUNY-bound grads
The state is ready to pay some students’ tuition to CUNY or SUNY, if they commit to studying science, technology, engineering, or math, Gov. Andrew…
May 5, 2014
More Hispanic students enroll in college but fewer students overall
More Hispanic students are enrolling in college even as college enrollment rates for other groups drop, according to a new report…
May 2, 2014
A new program to catch students up for college, without remediation
Colorado universities are toying with programs that bypass traditional remediation to keep students in college-level classes. They hope it will improve students' chances of graduating with a degree, which are low for students needed remediation. At Metro State, where instructors have been piloting the program for a while, the results are promising.
April 25, 2014
City may let some schools swap state exams for new, online tests next year
Some New York City schools may jump ahead of the rest of the state next year by taking new, online Common Core tests instead of the current state exams, according to city officials. But real problems remain for the rollout of PARCC tests statewide.
February 11, 2014
Colorado ranks ninth for high scores on AP exams
Colorado ranked ninth in the country for the number of students scoring highly enough on Advanced Placement exams to be eligible for college credit, according…
February 3, 2014
Are Colorado students “college & career ready?” Ask a recent graduate
How do we truly determine postsecondary workforce readiness? How do we collectively foster this readiness in students prior to graduation? What “21st century skills” matter most? Teacher Jessica Cuthbertson asked a recent graduate what she learned in high school that h
January 23, 2014
Find your school’s 2013 graduation rate
Colorado's on-time graduation rate continued its slow increase this year. To find out how your school fared, search our database.
crunching the numbers
January 23, 2014
State graduation rate inches up; dropout rate declines for seventh year
The state's graduation rate for the class of 2013 increased by 1.5 percentage points to 76.9 percent -- the same increment of change as the year before.
January 17, 2014
Obama spotlights Manhattan student in college speech
President Obama was nearing the end of a speech about college opportunity Thursday when he called attention to a student in the audience,…
January 17, 2014
Students celebrate internships at Brooklyn School for Collaborative Studies
For students at the Brooklyn School for Collaborative Studies, Friday was pass-the-torch day, as they celebrated the end of last semester’s internship program and helped…
December 26, 2013
New York State to fund college tours for low-income students
Visiting colleges is getting a little bit easier for New York high school students from low-income families. The New York State Higher Education Services Corporation…
October 23, 2013
Urban Youth Collaborative reiterates college-readiness recommendations
A top priority for the next mayor must be to boost the “abysmal” college-readiness rates among black and Hispanic students, according to a citywide student group that rallied outside City Hall Tuesday. The Urban Youth Collaborative released a policy paper during the rally that reiterates the group’s previous recommendations for how to close that college-readiness gap. Just over 11 percent of black students and 12 percent of Hispanic students were prepared for college when they graduated high school last year, according to the state’s metric, which is based on the percentage of students who graduate in four years with a 75 on their English Regents exam and an 80 on their math exam. In contrast, about 39 percent of white students and almost 53 percent of Asian students met those benchmarks.
June 17, 2013
Better news for city on college readiness, but wide gap remains
Chart Like the other large school districts in the state, New York City saw its graduation rate decline last year. But it bucked the trend when it came to graduates' preparedness for college, posting an increase where the other districts did not.
April 1, 2013
An Academic Probation Officer’s Peril And Promise
I remember so vividly the anticipation of getting my grades each term in the mail, tearing off the perforations to reveal whether or not my all-nighters were worth it. Now, even though grades are available in an instant and perforated paper is a thing of the past, I have that same anxiety for my students each time they send me their grades online.
January 28, 2013
One in 1.1 million: After homelessness, an Ivy League admission
Walid Rahman, a senior at Townsend Harris High School, was recently admitted to Columbia University. His family has struggled with poverty, illness, and homelessness. Walid Rahman was homeless from the time he was four until he was 10. He moved from couch to couch as his family struggled to earn a living while caring for Walid’s terminally ill father. But Walid, an 18 year-old senior at Townsend Harris High School in Queens, refused to let any of that stop him. He is determined to find a cure to beat his father’s illness. The first step for him is getting out of poverty and getting into a top college. Even though there are over 70,000 high school seniors across the country this year who are like Walid — low-income and qualified to attend a top college — they make up only 3 percent of the population at elite colleges and universities. The odds were stacked against him. Hard Beginnings Despite the Rahmans’ numerous hardships, the family considers their circumstances a blessing from God. The Rahmans, originally from Bangladesh, feared for their lives during Walid’s childhood. A criminal blackmailed the family, leaving them the choice to give up their business and lose everything or have Walid kidnapped. For Mr. Rahman, the choice was obvious. His family believed they could rebuild their lives in the United States. They entered the visa lottery and were chosen. When the family arrived in America, they had nothing.
January 4, 2013
In class on tragedy, a teacher casts herself as supporting actor
Joanna Dolgin's "Tragedy" class at East Side Community School focused on Shakespeare's Othello in December. Joanna Dolgin uttered only a few words during her first period "Tragedy" class one Monday last month, and she thought even those might have been too many. Dolgin's junior and senior English students at East Side Community High School were holding a formal discussion of Shakespeare's Othello. Tragedy is one of four English electives offered this semester at East Side, a small secondary school whose students, mostly Manhattan residents, are not required to take the full slate of Regents exams typically required for graduation. Instead, students complete projects, make presentations, and participate in discussions to show that they have mastered course material. Dolgin's Tragedy class is one of 52 high school courses citywide that the Department of Education has certified as being good preparation for college. GothamSchools spent a morning in the class, observing as students discussed a central question about Othello's plot. As when we have chronicled other classes in the past, we’ve included both a description of what we saw — and, in block quotes, a description of what the teacher was thinking. 9 a.m. "Who or what is to blame for Desdemona's death?" The debate prompt was written on the board when students entering Dolgin's makeshift classroom on the seventh floor of the Norman Thomas High School building, where East Side Community moved in October after its building was found to be structurally unsound.
December 20, 2012
Liu says city should pay CUNY tuition for top high school grads
Comptroller John Liu visited UFT headquarters after being elected in 2009. Today, Liu proposed new education and economic policies, including the "community schools" model the UFT favors. The city should ease the path to college for top high school students by promising them free tuition at city colleges, Comptroller John Liu said today in a "State of the City" speech, his second in 2012. In the speech, Liu put forth a slate of policy proposals, including several focused on education, that he said would enhance the city's economic future. Liu is a likely mayoral candidate, but as comptroller his job is to safeguard the city's financial prospects. "The offer of free tuition would help motivate students and elevate CUNY, one of our city’s most valuable gems, to the level of a competitive prize," Liu said, according to his prepared remarks. "It would also be a life-saver for many working families who are struggling to send their kids to college." Liu did not explain how the city could fund the initiative, but it would not cost much. With tuition set at $5,400 a year, even if every student in the top 10 percent of each graduating class enrolled and would not ordinarily receive financial aid — an unlikely scenario — paying their way would cost less than $12 million a year. Other proposals Liu made today would cost the city a lot more.
December 18, 2012
In Manhattan conference room, students get networking workout
College and career readiness isn't just about what students know — it's about whom they know, too. That's the philosophy behind the Opportunity Network, a 10-year-old nonprofit organization that aims to develop professional skills in students who might be the first in their family to attend college. Last Wednesday, that development came in the form of two-minute conversations with an array of young professionals during an event that the organization bills as "speed networking." (Watch part of the event in the video above.)
November 30, 2012
Evaluating homegrown courses, city deems some 'college-prep'
Students at Central Park East High School, one of several now receiving city credit for college-level courses its teachers developed. At Harry S. Truman High School, juniors in an honors English class arrange their desks in concentric circles to discuss Marxist and feminist theory in the American literary canon. At Central Park East High School, students taking the Mt. Sinai Careers course develop research projects on the health sciences while interning in hospital departments like pediatrics, orthopedics, and Mt. Sinai's morgue. And at East Side Community School, seniors compare ancient Greek tragedies. The courses are as challenging as any Advanced Placement class, their teachers say: To pass, students must demonstrate not only deep knowledge but also the kind of critical thinking required for success in college. But last year, when the Department of Education moved toward giving high schools credit in their annual letter grade for exposing students to college-level work, the courses did not count. This year, they are among 52 courses in city high schools to get the department's "college and career preparatory" stamp of approval, meaning that students who pass them typically stay in college after many ill-prepared students drop out.
November 26, 2012
For first time, college readiness factors into high school grades
When the Department of Education releases a new set of letter grades for high schools today, some schools could see their scores change substantially. That's because the latest progress reports, which the city uses in part to decide which schools to close, are the first to incorporate data about how well schools have prepared graduates for college. The shifting metrics reflect the department's growing recognition that a high school diploma does not guarantee college success. The new data look at the percentage of students who passed college-level exams or courses; met City University of New York proficiency standards; or entered college, the military, or a work training program, and together they make up 10 percent of each school's score. Most of the information appeared on last year's progress reports but did not factor into schools' grades. For the most part, the new data points do not work in schools' favor. For the last two years, the city has boasted a four-year graduation rate over 60 percent. But city and state assessments of students' college-readiness during the same period found that only about a quarter of students were ready for college four years after entering high school. The wide discrepancy means that the new metrics could easily depress some schools' overall scores, particularly because the department reduced the weight on graduation rates and credit accumulation to free up the points.
November 12, 2012
Traversing The State To Support New College Students
As a college counselor with Bottom Line, I visit my college students on campus monthly to meet with them one-on-one. Sometimes we problem-solve (think "I don't have my books!" or "My bill is incorrect!"); sometimes we prepare for the future (think “What classes should I take?” or “Can you help me edit my resume?”); and sometimes I'm just a familiar face from home with a handful of Jolly Ranchers, ready to listen.
October 25, 2012
In 90 minutes, Tisch took on readiness gap, test objectors, TFA
Learning Matters' John Merrow and New York State Board of Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch (Photo: Nancy Adler) The city's very low college and career readiness rate for black and Hispanic students is a statistic usually cited by advocates seeking to discredit the Bloomberg administration's education record. But when asked to measure the true value of a high school diploma in New York City Wednesday night by education reporter John Merrow, Board of Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch turned to the familiar statistic to convey her concerns. "That, to me, is tragic," Tisch said, after rattling off the numbers. Merrow pressed her to account for the disparity between the city's graduation rate, which is over 60 percent, and its low college-readiness rates. "Why isn't this fraud?" he asked. "I didn't say it wasn't," Tisch said. The exchange was part of a 90-minute public dialogue in which Tisch also criticized families who opt out of state tests, set firm limits about the city's request to certify teachers, and proclaimed that the city and its teachers union would reach a teacher evaluation deal before Gov. Andrew Cuomo's mid-January deadline.
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