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GradMinnesota Releases Policy Recommendations

Minnesota continues to have one of the worst achievement gaps in the country between whites and students of color, as well as major differences in high school graduation rates based on race, special needs and socio-economic factors.  While there are successful evidence-informed efforts working in schools, districts and communities around the state, changes in policy and practice are necessary to bring those efforts to scale and assure that all students have access to an education that prepares them for post-secondary and career success. Over the last year, representatives from over 50 state agencies, associations, schools and community organizations have been collaborating through the GradMinnesota initiative to analyze the issues, determine programs and practices that work, and identify policy changes necessary to close Minnesota’s student achievement gap and attain a 90% high school graduation rate by 2020.

The following policy recommendations have emerged through this collaborative effort:

– Ensure Quality Data is Available and Used to Effectively Target Supports

– Increase Mentoring throughout the State with a Focus on Enhanced Educational Success

– Provide Transportation Resources to Ensure Access to Learning Opportunities Through Graduation

– Redesign and Connect Services to Effectively Recover and Re-engage Youth

– Ensure Quality Implementation of a Tiered Framework of Interventions and Supports

– Replace Exclusionary Discipline Policies and Practices with More Effective Alternatives

– Provide Effective Alternative Pathways and Additional Time to Earn a Diploma

Investment in these recommended policies will be necessary, but the significant return on investment for Minnesota’s people is indisputable!  To get involved in the GradMinnesota initiative, contact Sarah Dixon at sdixon@mnyouth.net.

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