Kalamazoo schools

david52 Zone 6September 15, 2012

An article in todays NYT magazine, brought to my attention by someone who is one of the anonymous donors to the program.

Philanthropists will cover the in-state tuition costs of any student who graduates from the district high school, prorated on when they start - kindergarten - 12 will get you 100%, beginning as a high school freshman with get 60-something percent.

Its a lengthy article, to long to copy and paste, but brings up some interesting ideas about investing in public schools, and how this program reversed the decline in student numbers, brought in more investment, and helped reinvigorate the town.

That doesn't happen in a vacuum, of course, and the results aren't spectacular, but better than they were. Article lists some of the other influences and town attributes, all contributing.

Denver schools tried this as well, and there were only a few who managed to graduate and take advantage of the program. One reason it didn't work so well here was that many of the eligible kids turned out to be here illegally.

Here is a link that might be useful: link

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Obama gave the commencement address at that high school 2yrs ago.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2012 at 11:59AM
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I'm sometimes of the opinion that, given much of the circumstance the world finds itself in, with global and national issues and implications, some as depressing as they are, some kids might hold an attitude of, "what's the point?"... and with parents working so many jobs to hold families together, parenting has become television, video games, and the internet... so that push, that encouragement, toward success, and that early toddler/preschool learning, might be not be as available as it once was. How many mothers or parents are able to stay home during those formative years?

"There is an emerging consensus in economics that the biggest bang for the economic-development buck comes from investing in quality preschool education rather than higher education."

"... children who fall behind in school in early grades find later grades increasingly hard to handle."

"Dollars spent on getting very young children, even toddlers, ready to learn, the argument goes, do more to propel students through their school careers than any other spending."

Poverty and other issues have a way of pushing our kids off the path to success... where mothers once stayed home and raised their children, and it only took one income to support a household, it now can rarely play out like we want... and in many places, there are no philanthropic programs that help those who are simply unable to afford things like higher education.

The Promise is a good start... but there are so many other cities that could use a boost.

If only more people in more places would look at an investment in education, an investment in youth and early education, whether locally or on a larger scale, as a bridge to the future of not just our cities, but our nation, and our world as a whole... our society as a whole.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2012 at 1:17PM
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I seem to remember there was a philanthropist in New York state that also did this. He took a personal interest in the students (kind of their cheerleader) and almost all of the students he made that promise to went to college.

That, IMO, shows that it is the parents and people who are personally involved in a child's life that make the difference. Of course, we need good teachers, but, if there is no one in that child's life to encourage him/her, very few children are able, in this day and age, to do it on their own.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2012 at 1:55PM
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