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About Our Areas of Work
We organize our work into three areas to help low-income youth & adults:


Wednesday February 19, 2014
2014 has ushered in a new era in the world of high school equivalency assessments. These assessments offer an alternative route for students who, for one reason or another, could not complete a high school diploma. And we are not talking small numbers here: nearly 40 million U.S. adults 16 and older lack high school credentials, the bare minimum of entering postsecondary school and/or getting a job. Consequently, a growing number of youth and adults will, in the coming years, go back to school with the hopes of passing a high school equivalency exam. For many years, the General Education...
Tags: Dropout Recovery, Opportunity Youth
Tuesday February 4, 2014
MDRC’s recently released report, Beyond the GED: Promising Models for Moving High School Dropouts to College, is timely given the recent launch of a new GED test in states across the country. While much attention has been directed at developing a more up-to-date test, less attention has been directed at the implications of this work for GED programs themselves. Leaders and practitioners operating within a landscape of limited resources, small programs, and even smaller staffs are understandably anxious about whether they will be able to assist their participants to adequately prepare for and...
Tags: Opportunity Youth, Dropout Recovery
Monday January 27, 2014
Failing and underresourced schools, neighborhoods beset by street violence, lack of job opportunity, families split apart by addiction—many low-income young people of color face such well-chronicled barriers. Less visible and understood is the persistence and resilience that some of them demonstrate as they struggle in their teens and twenties to transcend those circumstances. Eight such young leaders shared their stories with leaders of community-based collective impact efforts from 21 cities, towns, and reservations. These initiatives are committed to improving education and workforce...
Tags: Opportunity Youth, Dropout Recovery, Student-Centered Learning
Friday January 25, 2013
By guest
Who Is in Charge Here? BDEA Reflection on Student Ownership
It has been a busy year at Boston Day and Evening Academy (BDEA), and much of our focus has been directed to our third 5-year charter renewal—a crucial milestone in the life of a charter school. During the 3-day visit by BDEA’s re-charter team, a student panel was asked “Who is in charge here?” Our students, never shy, jumped right in. Some of them said it was the head of school, others mentioned her by name, but one finally said, “We are!” When the facilitator asked for clarification, others started chiming in to explain that they, the students, are the ones in charge of their education at...
Tags: Competency Education, Dropout Recovery, Opportunity Youth
Thursday January 17, 2013
How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character
Paul Tough’s new book, How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character, is about the importance of character in preparing students for success in education, employment, and life. Specifically, he describes the critical role of developing executive functions for young people to succeed in college. Executive functions, according to Mr. Tough, combine both emotional and cognitive impulse control that help students regulate their thought and emotions. He quotes a Harvard psychologist who describes executive functions as “a team of air traffic controllers overseeing the...
Tags: Dropout Recovery