Success! Next fall, Chicago's Urban Prep Academy will again meet its goal of sending 100 percent of its graduates — all black males, and mostly from Chicago's "worst" neighborhoods — to four-year colleges.
This was no easy feat, and it certainly had nothing do with handpicking kids who would have had success anywhere. AOL Black Voices reports:
The school started with kids whose futures had been left for dead by their public schools: Only four percent of the school's incoming freshmen were reading at grade level when they arrived on campus. But by sending all of their graduating seniors to college, they've not only gotten these kids up to speed, they've allowed them to zip past every other public school in the entire United States.
"No other public [school] in the country has done this," said Tim King, the founder of Urban Prep.
Urban Prep Academies is a nonprofit organization founded in 2002 by Tim King and a group of African-American education, business and civic leaders. Its mission is straightforward: to provide young men with a comprehensive, high-quality college-preparatory education that results in graduates succeeding in college.
File the academy's announcement under "There is good news in the world after all!" and also under "Pay attention." Because Urban Prep is doing something right — and it shouldn't be the only school making this announcement every year.
We're both celebrating this victory and looking forward to the day when a group of smart young men getting a chance to fulfill their potential isn't so unbelievable.
Read more at AOL Black Voices.
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