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Diplomas Now benefits students, their schools and communities. What is Diplomas Now?. Diplomas Now is a proven approach that helps the toughest middle and high schools in America’s largest cities ensure that every student graduates ready for college or career.

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what is diplomas now

What is Diplomas Now?

Diplomas Now is a proven approach that helps the toughest middle and high schools in America’s largest cities ensure that every student graduates ready for college or career.

It is the first fully integrated approach that improves a school’s curriculum and instruction while it provides the right students with the right support at the right time.

The Right Support at the Right Time

early identification
Early Identification

Diplomas Now is based on research by the nation’s leading dropout expert who found that a sixth grader with even one of the following warning signs was 75 percent more likely to drop out of high school: poor attendance, failure in English or math, and poor behavior.

Future Dropouts Can Be Identified as Early as 6th Grade

Diplomas Now identifies those students early and helps schools eliminate problems.

shutting down dropout factories
Shutting Down Dropout Factories

A small set of high schools drive the nation’s dropout crisis, costing society too much money and wasting young minds.

About 2,000 high schools produce half of the nation’s dropouts. Those schools currently are not designed to help kids off track succeed – there are too many needy kids and not enough resources.

old a triage approach
Old: A Triage Approach

Until now, school administrators in the toughest schools, overwhelmed by the scale of need, all too often have adopted a triage approach and had to choose from narrowly tailored school intervention programs.

In addition, they did not have the research, the data, the extra adult support, the technology and the tools they needed.

new the diplomas now approach
New: The Diplomas Now Approach

Diplomas Now changes that scenario because it offers 65 combined years of experience from three respected national nonprofits:  

Johns Hopkins University’s Talent Development Secondary, a school reform model that improves instruction and performance.

Communities In Schools’ in-school case managers, trained to support the neediest students.

City Year’s team of in-school, “near peer” AmeriCorps student coaches.

where to find diplomas now schools
Where to Find Diplomas Now Schools

Diplomas Now operates in 31 schools in Boston, Baton Rouge, Chicago, Columbia, S.C., Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, Philadelphia, San Antonio, Seattle, and Washington, D.C.

In 2010, Diplomas Now won a prestigious federal grant, an Investing in Innovation (i3) grant, enabling expansion to even more schools over five years.

diplomas now delivers results
Diplomas Now Delivers Results

At numerous schools, Diplomas Now has cut chronic absence and discipline problems in half and has decreased course failure by up to 75 percent on average.

In some of America’s toughest schools, Diplomas Now has more than doubled the number of kids on track to graduate.

diplomas now benefits students schools communities
Diplomas Now Benefits Students, Schools & Communities

For young people, it means attending a safer school and graduating with a meaningful diploma ready for the future.

For schools, it means raising achievement scores and graduation rates and letting teachers teach by providing extra adults to help meet students’ needs.

For communities, it means decreased dropout rates, a better trained workforce and a new generation of local leaders.

how does diplomas now work with students schools
How Does Diplomas Now Work with Students & Schools?
  • Provides At-Risk Students with Caring Adult Support
  • Integrates Student Support & School Improvement
  • Gives Adults Tools to Improve Student Success
diplomas now lessons programs schools
Diplomas Now Lessons & Programs: Schools

Diplomas Now provides lessons and programs that help make the school a place where teachers are able to teach and students want to learn.

  • A restructured schedule to increase math and English time
  • Teams of teachers share students and a common planning time
  • Extensive professional development
  • College prep/high school readiness classesin math, English, science, and social studies
diplomas now lessons programs students
Diplomas Now Lessons & Programs: Students

Students get extra support from young adults, working full-time in the school, who:

  • Greet students every day by name
  • Call home if they don’t show up
  • Provide extensive tutoring
  • Mentor students
  • Celebrate positive performance
  • Help with homework
  • Involve students in service and enrichment programs
diplomas now and high risk students
Diplomas Now and High-Risk Students

Students struggling with the greatest needs get:

  • Case management from trained professionals
  • Referrals to community resources, such as counseling, health and dental care, housing, food and clothing
  • In-school peer support groups
praise and attention for diplomas now
Praise and Attention for Diplomas Now

“Diplomas Now works closely with school administrators, teachers, support staff, and families to create a system for identifying off-track youth. . .to get them back on track. . . This model shows great promise to prepare our students to graduate ready for college and a career.

- Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter

Media Highlights:

  • CBS Evening News: “Here, Kids Are Encouraged to Dream, not Drop Out”
  • Ed Week: “New Orleans Schools a Study in Contrast”
  • New York Times: “As Student Absenteeism Rises, A Charter School Fights Back”USA Today: “To Fight ‘Dropout Factories,’ School Program Starts Young”
diplomas now costs how schools pay for it
Diplomas Now Costs: How Schools Pay for It

The cost of Diplomas Now varies depending upon the size and need of the school, but it is approximately $500-$700 per student.

Diplomas Now defrays those costs by up to $500,000 over three years with funding from the federal i3 grant. Long term, the return on investment from Diplomas Now surpasses any of the single-focused improvement efforts being conducted.

Some districts are using creative financing to bring the model to their schools:

School Improvement Grant funds

Title I funds

Race to the Top and Other Innovation Funds

Civic and Corporate Partners

want to learn more
Want to Learn More?

Visit our website at: www.diplomasnow.orgOr e-mail us at: