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


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
Wednesday May 2, 2012
Education is hailed as the greatest equalizer in American society. The fact is for entire generations of Americans, access to good and meaningful educational opportunities has historically been a ticket to well-paying jobs, greater participation in civic life, strong families and communities, and for all of us a stronger and more prosperous United States of America. Yet for a large portion of African-Americans (males in particular), the promise of education as a way out of poverty into a productive life of work and active civic participation remains largely unfulfilled. The statistics are...
Tags: Dropout Recovery, State-Local K-12 Policy
Tuesday March 27, 2012
College Attainment for All
As educators, our primary focus should be preparing our students to succeed in the world that they will confront throughout their entire life. To thrive in this technologically advanced, global society those entering adulthood must, more than ever, complete a postsecondary course of study that prepares them for successful entry into a career pathway with the potential to earn a wage that will support their family and provide opportunities for advancement. In Texas, and across the country, there are huge gaps in educational attainment between different segments of our population. Economically...
Tags: Dual Enrollment, Early College, State-Local K-12 Policy, STEM
Thursday March 8, 2012
Mass. Voting to Increase Compulsory Attendance to Age 18
The Massachusetts legislature’s Education Committee has scheduled a vote for today on a bill that will raise the compulsory school attendance age to 18. President Obama proposed that all states enact this policy in his State of the Union address earlier this year, citing evidence that raising the age can lead to higher earnings and better lifetime outcomes. While I applaud Massachusetts’ commitment to ensuring that policies are in place that support student success, laws alone are not enough to create incentives for some students to stay in school, or for schools to keep students engaged and...
Tags: Dropout Recovery, State-Local K-12 Policy