This blog is an archive of the Ed Reform 101 project, designed to give policy makers and the public clear, concise information about education reform. There are five posts in the series, which are also presented in the "Pages" column. Fact sheets in .pdf format will also be available soon.
Even kids who make it through high school and into college face hurdles. While the majority of Sci Academy’s graduates enrolled in four-year colleges in the fall of 2012, over 10 percent had either dropped out or transferred to junior colleges within six months of matriculating. (Marcovitz acknowledges that the school needs to both improve student attrition and help its graduates stay in college. Sci Academy recently appointed “college captains,” who will keep in touch with classmates and alert the school to any problems kids are having in college.)
Another fact that troubled Levey was student debt: the average Sci Academy student, if he or she completes college, will graduate with $22,000 to $27,000 in debt, according to Levey, even if the student is eligible for state or federal aid. Meanwhile, students who drop out will leave with thousands of dollars in loans. Says Levey: “A kid who is barely passing, but qualifies for a four-year college, who really doesn’t have any academic interests—why am I having them mark general studies on their college application, why? Or nursing or chemical engineering?”