SEPTEMBER 26, 2013

Issue Highlights: Facts & Figures


NEW YORK CITY FACES A TREMENDOUS CHALLENGE IN ITS EFFORTS TO GET ALL STUDENTS ACADEMICALLY READY FOR COLLEGE OR WORK. Just 29 percent of graduates in the Class of 2012 had test scores high enough to avoid remedial courses at the City University of New York. (See "Chancellor Walcott's Steep Challenge," page 5.)

MANY SCHOOLS OFFER ACCESS TO ONE OR TWO COLLEGE-LEVEL COURSES — AND PASSING EVEN ONE COURSE IMPROVES OUTCOMES. An internal Department of Education analysis found that taking even one CUNY College Now or AP course, for example, reduces the likelihood that students will need remedial classes in college. (See "Access to Advanced Classes in High School," page 13.)

NYC'S NONPROFIT SECTOR PLAYS A CRUCIAL ROLE FILLING COLLEGE GUIDANCE GAPS: High school counselors are typically able to offer only basic application and financial aid help. The nonprofit sector provides a crucial assist with the many additional supports students need. (See "Filling NYC's College Guidance Gaps," page 47.)

MOST HIGH SCHOOLS IN NYC DO NOT OFFER A FULL COLLEGE PREPARATORY CURRICULUM. Students should have access to advanced math and science courses to prepare for college. An analysis of citywide Regents exams for Algebra 2, Chemistry and Physics revealed that only 28 of 342 schools reviewed had all three of these courses--and 46 schools had none. (See "Access to Advanced Classes in High School," page 13.)

THIS ACADEMIC CHALLENGE BEGINS LONG BEFORE HIGH SCHOOL. Only 25 percent of New York eighth graders met state standards for reading in 2013 when students took new tests aligned to college expectations. College preparation is daunting when reading skills lag so far behind. (See "High Hopes...Fragile Expectations," page 18.)

GUIDANCE COUNSELOR CASELOADS ARE TOO HIGH TO GIVE STUDENTS THE HELP THEY NEED PREPARING FOR COLLEGE:In 61 percent of schools, counselors have caseloads of 100 to 300 students-- and in most of the remaining schools the caseloads are even higher. (See "Guidance Counselor Caseloads Vary Widely," page 31.)

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