Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Earning their keep

Inner city kids have to work to pay their own way in order to attend a private Catholic school--and its working:

"These start-ups are all committed to enrolling only low-income kids; network-wide, 72 percent of students qualify for the federal free or reduced-price lunch program. The schools are also committed to sending the vast majority of their graduates to college; of the 318 students who graduated from Cristo Rey Network schools in 2007, 316 were accepted to a two- or four-year college. That’s better than 99 percent. (Nationwide, just 67 percent of students who graduate from high school start college shortly thereafter, and in big cities that figure can be much lower."

The article reports that less than 20% of African-American and Hispanic adults in America have a high school degree. That's a horrible state of affairs. But there are ways out of the mess; and the way out doesn't require throwing money at the problem (we've tried that already; it doesn't work).