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The Impact Of Project GRAD (Graduation Really Achieves Dreams). Presented By: Tony Hastings Audra Wells. Facts About Project GRAD. Non-Profit educational reform Started in Houston, Texas in 1992 Used in grades K-12 Delivers research based results on national scale.

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The impact of project grad graduation really achieves dreams

The Impact Of Project GRAD (Graduation Really Achieves Dreams)

Presented By:

Tony Hastings

Audra Wells

Facts about project grad
Facts About Project GRAD

  • Non-Profit educational reform

  • Started in Houston, Texas in 1992

  • Used in grades K-12

  • Delivers research based results on national scale.

  • Currently serving 132,000 students

  • Now being utilized in 211 of the nations disadvantaged schools

History of project grad
History of Project GRAD

  • 1988, Tenneco Company funds four year college scholarships for Davis High School in Houston, Texas

  • 1991, Number of graduates in Davis High School quadruples

  • 1991-1993, Development of the full Project GRAD model

  • 1993, Principals and teachers vote to adopt Project GRAD

  • Today, Project GRAD in Houston effects more than 51,000 students in 74 schools nationally

Some of the districts implementing the project grad program
Some of the Districts Implementing the Project GRAD Program

  • Alaska

    • Kenai Peninsula

  • California

    • Los Angeles

  • Texas

    • Houston

    • Brownsville

  • Ohio

    • Columbus

    • Akron

    • Cincinnati

    • Lorain

  • Tennessee

    • Knoxville

  • New York

    • Long Island

  • New Jersey

    • Newark

  • Georgia

    • Atlanta

What is project grad
What Is Project GRAD?

  • Innovative model for economically disadvantaged youth

    • College prep

    • Challenging curricula

    • Opportunities for college scholarships

Mission of project grad
Mission Of Project GRAD

  • To ensure quality public education for all at risk children in economically disadvantaged communities

    • To increase the graduation rates these communities

    • To prepare students to enter and have a successful college experience

Goals of project grad
Goals of Project GRAD

  • To have the following results:

    • 80% students graduate from high school

    • 50% students enter and graduated from college

    • Provide long term support for the students in districts

    • Works to achieve sustainable systematic change

The five pillars of project grad
The Five Pillars of Project GRAD

  • The Feeder System

  • Existing Assets

  • Community Collaboration

  • Project GRAD USA

  • Local Grad Sites

Components of project grad
Components of Project GRAD

  • Mathematics

  • Literacy

  • Classroom Management

  • Social Services /Parent Involvement

  • High School Programs

Results of project grad
Results of Project GRAD

  • Number of high school graduates increased by 94%

  • Number of students going to college has increased 400%

  • Graduates are completing college at a rate that is 70% higher than national average

Cost of project grad
Cost of Project GRAD

  • Average cost is $500 per student

    • 5% of the total amount spent to educate a public school student

  • Costs are covered by reallocating existing funds

  • Administrative costs are 8% of Project GRAD’s overall cost

Advantages to project grad mdrc 2006
Advantages to Project GRAD(mdrc 2006)

  • Uses a “feeder” program structure

  • Encourages the push for students to be better prepared for Project GRAD high schools

  • Provides financial support for college

  • Strives to change the learning environment

  • Plans for long range reform

Disadvantages to project grad mdrc 2006
Disadvantages to Project GRAD(mdrc 2006)

  • Lacks curriculum reform

  • Does not address specific skill deficits of students

  • Lacks staff development for instructional content

  • Is not having the anticipated quick improvement for student achievement

  • Has not dealt with the “leaks” in the feeder system

    • Students moving into the high school that did not have the advantage of the feeder school

    • Transitions of families in and out of the schools

What do we belive about project grad
What Do We Belive About Project GRAD?

  • Appears to be too good to be true

  • Too young of a reform to make a solid judgment on the program

  • Rated as a moderate reform program

  • Has the potential to be a great reform program for a school system if the program addresses missing attributes

  • The reform addresses the whole child not just the academic portion


  • Project GRAD USA (2006 update), “Project GRAD Houston, Texas”. November12, 2006


  • Snipes, J., Holton, G., Doolittle, F., Sztejnberg, L., (July 2006) “Striving for Student Success”, Manpower Demonstration Research Corporation (MDRC). November 12, 2006


  • Interview with Ms. Montina Jones, Knoxville County School District, Knoxville, Tennessee