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Without a rigorous high school preparation, young adults are likely to be relegated to the sidelines of our economy, our democracy, and our society. But for far too many low-income students and students of color, the high school experience amounts to little more than a series of frustrations, closed doors, and missed opportunities.
Many students never make it through high school at all. More than one-third of all African-American and Latino students who start ninth grade will not graduate with their peers four years later. And too many high school graduates are woefully unprepared for the demands of college and careers. Two-thirds of African-American and Latino students who enroll in college need remediation. Employers overwhelmingly report that high school graduates are unprepared to do the work expected of them.
Leading states and districts are responding by identifying the knowledge and skills necessary to put young people on solid footing before entering college and the workplace. They accomplish this by enrolling all students in a course of study aligned with these high expectations. But much work remains to ensure that the goal of college and career readiness for all students becomes a reality.
The Education Trust works with policymakers and practitioners to ensure that all students have access to a rigorous college and career-ready course of study, that every classroom teacher knows the subject matter and how to teach it, that teachers can draw upon rich and engaging curricular materials aligned with college and career-ready standards, and that students—especially those who enter high school far behind—receive the support they need to meet high expectations.