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Diplomas Count Highlights Baltimore School's Work to Build College-Going Culture

As more policymakers and educators set their sights on graduating more students and getting them successfully through postsecondary education, they are grappling with how to transform high schools so that those higher expectations are part of the school culture.

But what is "college-going culture" and how do you build it? Vivien T. Thomas Academy in Baltimore offers one case study. We share it with you in Diplomas Count, a special report released today by Education Week and the Editorial Projects in Education Research Center.

Vivien Thomas is one of many Baltimore schools that partners with the CollegeBound Foundation, a local nonprofit group that sends full-time college counselors onto the campuses to prepare and advise students on college preparation, applications, financial aid, and enrollment. Since high school counselors have staggering caseloads and generally little training in college advising, more and more outside programs like this are cropping up to bolster students' chances of learning about, being prepared for, and getting into college.

Those of you working in "the high school space" will find tons of intriguing information in the 2009 edition of Diplomas Count, including examinations of what it means to make all students college ready, and the role data should play in monitoring the education pipeline. We highlight what one state in particular, Florida, has done with its data systems. Also, the Research Center provides an extensive analysis of high school graduation-rate trends. Bookmark this valuable resource and come back to it often!

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