CollegeSpring Serves More Students At Traditional Public Schools

San Francisco, CA, July 7, 2014 – This summer, for the first time, CollegeSpring will serve more students from traditional public schools than from charter schools. During summer 2014, CollegeSpring expects to serve 750 students at 22 sites in Northern and Southern California. More than half of these students attend traditional public schools. Vice President of Programs Julie Gopalan explained,

“CollegeSpring has always partnered with traditional public schools. These partnerships have been very successful, often outperforming our portfolio as a whole, and we have been excited about the potential to expand our partnerships to the district level in order to reach more schools and more students.  Although charter schools and community organizations have historically formed the solid base of our partnerships, which has allowed us to prove our model in a more flexible environment and grow quickly, we recognize that students from traditional public schools make up 96% of our nation’s high school students. This summer is an important milestone for us, because it shows that we are making strong progress towards making our programs accessible to as many students as possible.”

District-level partnerships are key in making CollegeSpring’s programs more widely available to students from traditional public schools. Last summer, a pilot program with San Francisco Unified School District served 60 students at three SFUSD schools; Abraham Lincoln High School chose to also offer CollegeSpring programs during the school year. This summer, CollegeSpring will serve 60 students from four SFUSD schools through programs at Abraham Lincoln High School and Mission High School. The Santa Cruz College Commitment, a consortium that includes all Santa Cruz County K-12 districts along with local colleges and universities, is also returning for a second summer, as are a number of individual public schools. A full list of summer 2014 sites can be found here.

CollegeSpring is also cultivating relationships with traditional public schools in Los Angeles Unified School District, including Bell High School. CollegeSpring will serve 80 students at Bell High School in the coming academic year, with additional support from EduCare Foundation and Beyond The Bell. Kathy Dominguez, Los Angeles Executive Director, says,

“I am particularly excited for our partnership with Bell High School, as it is an incredibly high need community and exactly the type of students that we aim to serve. Bell  is one of the largest high schools in the nation, with over 5,000 students who are on a four-track, year-round calendar. This means that there are students on campus all 12 months out of the year as there aren’t enough seats to meet the needs of the community, and every six weeks a quarter of the school goes on break and another group returns. 90% of students qualify for free and reduced lunch.

In spite of these challenges, the school is on an upward trajectory, having both grown their API and performed at or above predicted levels using the district’s internal value-added measures. Most importantly, the leadership of the school and a core group of teachers are leading the way to increase college attainment for their students. Currently only 30% of their graduates are UC or CSU eligible. I believe that our partnership will be critical in supporting the turnaround work that has already begun and increasing the number of kids from this community who are enrolling in college.”

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