MAKING COLLEGE ACCESSIBLE TO ALL
The Statistics are Sobering
- Only 70% of public school students graduate, and only 32% of graduates are qualified to attend four-year colleges.
- Only 51% of black students and 52% of Hispanic students graduate, and only 20% of black students and 16% of Hispanic students leave high school college-ready.
- More than 60% of higher income students complete a bachelor’s degree by age 24. Fewer than 10% of lower income students do.
The above data, provided by the U.S. Department of Education and National Center for Education Statistics, show that there is much work to be done to prepare all students, but especially low-income students, for the future in our highly competitive world.
Early College Awareness
The U.S. Department of Education recommends that students begin planning for college as early as sixth grade, to gain a vision for their future and begin taking the classes they will need to pursue college prep work in high school. Knowing the barriers our students face, Community Schools Collaboration begins college awareness even earlier.
Elementary school children at CSC schools participate in lively question-and-answer sessions with visiting college students. In previous sessions, children have asked questions such as:
- “How do you get to be in college?”
- “Is college hard?”
- “Is college fun?”
- “How do you get a job after college?”
While these events plant the seed that college is an attainable goal for our young students, we recognize that college preparation needs to be more intentional as students approach the middle school years.
College Readiness for Secondary Students
Middle school students at CSC participate in college and career exploration activities to identify their future goals and understand the steps it will take to attain them.
CSC involves high school students in more intensive college prep activities. In partnership with organizations such as College Success Foundation and Washington College Access Network, CSC provides the following:
- speakers from higher education and certification programs
- college trips and tours for students and their parents
- advice on choosing high school classes to ensure college readiness
- assistance with college applications, financial aid forms, and scholarship searches
Due to these and other supports,
- 90% of CSC students complete high school on time.
- 65% of CSC high school graduates go on to some form of higher education.