Conversations About Education: Building a GradNation
March 17, 2020
Leading the discussion will be John Bridgeland, CEO of Civic Enterprises, a public policy firm in Washington, D.C., and co-author of "Building a GradNation: Progress and Challenge in Ending the High School Dropout Epidemic," an annual report produced as part of a "Civic Marshall Plan" that details progress toward the goal of achieving a national average on-time high school graduate rate of 90 percent by 2020. Released by the Alliance for Excellent Education, America's Promise Alliance, Civic Enterprises, and the Everyone Graduates Center at Johns Hopkins University, the most recent GradNation report in 2014 shows that the nation's high school graduation rate rose above 80 percent for the first time in the nation's history. In addition, the number of students enrolled in dropout factories has dropped 47 percent over the last decade, and students of color have led the way in increasing graduation rates and leaving dropout factory high schools. These increases have come as standards to graduate have gotten tougher. Among his many other enterprises, Bridgeland's work on the high school dropout crisis has received national attention, including a TIME cover story, "Dropout Nation," two Oprah Winfrey programs prompted by his report, "The Silent Epidemic," and his leadership of a national summit on the issue with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the National Governors Association and MTV. During this program, Bridgeland will discuss promising strategies, ways to improve K-12 practices, and implications for the 2015 GradNation report to be issued in May.