Two years ago, AchieveMpls and Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS) joined 19 other school districts across the country in receiving capacity-building grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s To and Through Advising Challenge. The Gates Foundation collaborated with the National College Attainment Network (NCAN) to support best practices that boost postsecondary outcomes for underrepresented students, including strengthening college advising, increasing access to financial aid by driving FAFSA completion, reducing “summer melt” and utilizing data more effectively.
Now our AchieveMpls-MPS partnership is featured in the new NCAN report, "The Data that Matter and the Plans that Work: Districtwide Approaches to Student Success Beyond High School.” The report profiles five school districts and partner organizations that participated in the advising challenge and highlights the strategies they developed to improve postsecondary outcomes.
“Although NCAN has community-based members across the country working in concert with local school districts, few are as tightly tied as AchieveMpls and Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS),” the report says. “The value proposition of a program like AchieveMpls is clear. As a universal service provider, they work with every student and fulfill a critical career and college readiness role for the district.”
NCAN points to Achieve's Career & College Centers in 11 MPS high schools, our collaboration with MSP counseling teams, access to MPS student data to guide this work, and our leadership in shifting the conversation from college admission to college success and graduation. It also cites the substantial training and technical assistance Achieve provides for staff on data usage analysis, equity in college access and persistence, and strategies such as reducing summer melt, in which graduating seniors who are accepted to college don't enroll in the fall.