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

Blog

Friday March 29, 2013
High School and College: A Perfect Union
“High school and college have been working so well together in our county, we wanted them to get married.” So quipped Dr. Austin Obasahan, Superintendent of Duplin County (NC) Schools to D.C. policymakers last Wednesday. But can high school and college really come together in a successful union for high school students? Data show a resounding “yes.” Early college high school designs and dual and concurrent enrollment courses have been growing fast as college readiness, access, and completion strategies nationwide, particularly for minority and low-income youth, the latest National Center for...
Tags: Dual Enrollment, Early College
Tuesday March 26, 2013
Early College: Stronger than Ever
Eleven years after the Early College High School Initiative launched, the early college movement has achieved a great deal. There are now more than 75,000 students in early college schools across the country who graduate high school and enroll in college at far higher rates than their peers. Nearly all of them earn college credit before high school graduation, and nearly a quarter graduate with Associate’s degree in hand. As we reflect on early college’s impact, JFF is focused on expanding early college opportunities to far more students across the country, particularly those in...
Tags: Dual Enrollment, Early College
Tuesday February 19, 2013
JFF's Response to President Obama's State of the Union
In last week’s State of the Union address, President Obama drove home the need to create good middle-class jobs as the key to growing and sustaining our economy. “Every day, we should ask ourselves three questions as a nation,” he said. “How do we attract more jobs to our shores? How do we equip our people with the skills needed to do those jobs? And how do we make sure that hard work leads to a decent living?” Training American workers to fill today’s technology-driven jobs requires innovative approaches that closely align education programs with the skills needed by local employers. That’s...
Tags: Career Pathways, Early College
Friday October 19, 2012
Joel Vargas and I recently finished a research study where we found that Texas high school students who take college courses through dual enrollment are a lot more likely to attend college and receive a college degree. There are a few other studies of dual enrollment from other states that support what we found, but our study is different and exciting in a number of ways. For one, we had the luxury of tracking high school students all the way to the point of graduating college. A lot of educational programs focus on shorter-term outcomes like college enrollment. College graduation has been...
Tags: Dual Enrollment, Early College, State-Local K-12 Policy
Thursday July 12, 2012
If you missed it over the holiday week, it’s well worth watching PBS NewsHour’s excellent two-part report on South Texas’ Pharr-San Juan-Alamo (PSJA) school district. This border district is setting a compelling example for how we can make school work for all students—especially the high-poverty, Hispanic students who make up this school system. PSJA engages all students with dynamic teaching, puts them on a clear path to a college degree or credential, and supports their college success even after graduation. All students, including former dropouts, take college classes before they graduate...
Tags: Dropout Recovery, Dual Enrollment, Early College, State-Local K-12 Policy