The (Bentonville) district also is participating in a national initiative called Lead Higher, which encourages students from different ethnic and economic backgrounds to take the most rigorous courses available at their schools.
The Lead Higher Initiative, started by the nonprofit organization Equal Opportunity Schools, is based on research showing academic intensity in high school drives college completion more than any other factor.
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The Mounds View district has also been working closely with Equal Opportunity Schools, a group aiming to enroll students of all backgrounds in advanced placement.
“[Equal Opportunity Schools] kind of gave us a springboard into the work we’ve been undertaking this year,” Ridlehoover said. “We re-branded that as early college access. What we’ve basically done is take the principles [Equal Opportunity Schools] taught us and used those principles to try to increase enrollment across the board and across the demographics.”
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L-P (La Salle-Peru Township High School) is participating in the nationwide Lead Higher program through Equal Opportunity Schools, and (Steve) Wrobleski is working to get a more diverse population of students (women, Latino students, etc.) involved in Advanced Placement classes and taking the exam. He said about 400 students participated in AP classes last year.
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At the Nov. 10 SIEPR Policy Forum on K-12 Education, Stanford sophomore Andrew Dallakoti, moderates a discussion with Northwestern University Professor Diane Whitmore Schanzenbach and Reid Saaris, founder and CEO of Equal Opportunity Schools, on the challenges of closing achievement gaps.
Read more on The Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research page
Through Equal Opportunity Schools (EOS), the district has increased enrollment of underrepresented populations in advanced high school courses.
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