Grad Nation Report and School Turnarounds

In case you haven’t heard, America’s Promise Alliance released their Building a Grad Nation Report last week. While the report gives us some good news, it also lets us know that we have a long way to go before the US can reclaim its position as number one in the world in terms of educational attainment. In short, too many of our students continue to drop out of high school, and we still have too many “dropout factories” across the country.

The Department of Education is already investing heavily in turning around our lowest performing schools through our School Improvement Grants – and a bulk of this money is going to our high schools. According to our latest data, 730 schools are currently undergoing school turnarounds, and 48 percent of those schools are high schools. This is great news for our high schools, which have historically been underserved by Title 1. The data also shows that our money is being spent where it’s needed most.

Of course, we need great schools at all levels – elementary, middle, and high schools. But we know that secondary schools face unique challenges, and therefore require more complex solutions and supports. Our investment in turning around lowest performing schools is one piece of the puzzle in helping our secondary schools become centers of excellence for all of our students.