Students who want to take college preparatory classes will have more of a chance to through a new national program at School District 27J. Administrators recently received a $27,000 matching grant to offer more college prep classes. The money comes from the national Equal Opportunity Schools program.
Local schools receive technical assistance when they join the program. Teachers in the program focus on making sure all students try to achieve academic excellence, according to a press release.
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ISBE has requested $1 million to expand the AP program to additional schools through teacher professional development and assistance for students to enroll and succeed in AP courses.
Part of this funding will support the Lead Higher Initiative (in collaboration with Equal Opportunity Schools) whose partnership with Illinois aims to enroll 100,000 low-income students and students of color in AP and International Baccalaureate courses.
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Expanding Access to Underrepresented Student Groups
CPS joined the Lead Higher Initiative, an innovative partnership with the national nonprofit Equal Opportunity Schools to close the racial and socioeconomic participation gap in rigorous college courses. The program launched earlier this year at six CPS high schools to ensure students have access to the most rigorous coursework.
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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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