High School Success
In 2009, Illinois set an ambitious education goal known as “60x25” – the State would align and improve its education systems so that 60% of Illinois adults would hold a high-quality college degree or postsecondary credential by the year 2025.
As 2025 creeps closer, that goal is becoming more elusive. Only about half of Illinois adults meet this benchmark, with just 64% of high school graduates enrolling in a post-secondary program and 28% of them completing one.
We can and must do better.
There is a whole world of career opportunities to explore, and through relevant college- and career-counseling in high school, every student should be supported to discover how their passions fit within a career area. Career and Technical Education opportunities and access to Dual Credit courses give students the education, training, or experience they need to make informed choices about their future and prepare for a meaningful career.
The most important point in a high schooler’s tenure is right at the beginning: ninth grade. Freshmen who stay “on-track” are more than three times as likely to graduate high school than their peers who do not, making the “freshmen-on-track” rate one of the most important to measure and improve.
Finally, resources and supports that enable higher education access round out the package of how good public policy shapes high school success.
Stand’s 2018 report “Stop Illinois Brain Drain” digs further into these issues and suggests a number of policy recommendations to help ensure high school success for all Illinois students.