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ERIC Number: ED493362
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2006-Jul
Pages: 131
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 18
Striving for Student Success. The Effect of Project GRAD on High School Student Outcomes in Three Urban School Districts
Snipes, Jason C.; Holton, Glee Ivory; Doolittle, Fred; Sztejnberg, Laura
This report describes the effects of Project Graduation Really Achieves Dreams (GRAD) on student progress at three high schools in Houston (the initiative's original site) and at high schools in two other school districts (Columbus, Ohio, and Atlanta, Georgia). MDRC--a nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization--conducted a third-party evaluation to determine the effects of Project GRAD by comparing the changes in student outcomes at Project GRAD schools with changes at similar, non-Project GRAD schools in the same districts. (A companion report discusses findings for Project GRAD elementary schools.) In general, Project GRAD student outcomes are tracked from the implementation of the first components of the model at each site until the 2002-2003 school year. The key findings of this report are: At Jefferson Davis High School in Houston, the initiative's flagship school, Project GRAD had a statistically significant positive impact on the proportion of students who completed a core academic curriculum on time--that is, received an average grade of 75 out of 100 in their core courses; earned four credits in English, three in math, two in science, and two in social students; and graduated from high school within four years. As Project GRAD expanded into two other Houston high schools, these positive effects on students' academic preparation were not evident. Student outcomes at the newer Project GRAD high schools improved, but generally this progress was matched by progress at the comparison high schools. Improvements in graduation rates at the three Project GRAD Houston high schools were generally matched by improvements in graduation rates at the comparison schools. Looking at early indicators of student success, the initial Project GRAD high schools in Columbus and Atlanta showed improvements in attendance and promotion to tenth grade that appear to have outpaced improvements at the comparison schools, although the differences are only sometimes statistically significant. The following are appended: (1) The Impacts on High School Graduation among All Ninth-Grade Students in Houston; (2) High School Achievement in Houston: Was There Shifting of the Pool of Test-Takers?; and (3) Selecting Comparison Schools. (Contains 3 boxes, 6 tables, and 20 figures.) [Additional supplemental funding for this document was provided by the Lucent Technologies Foundation; and Project GRAD USA.]
MDRC. 16 East 34th Street, 19th Floor, New York, NY 10016-4326. Tel: 212-532-3200; Fax: 212-684-0832; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Ford Foundation, New York, NY.; Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.; Grable Foundation, Pittsburgh, PA.
Authoring Institution: Manpower Demonstration Research Corp., New York, NY.
Identifiers - Location: Georgia; Ohio; Texas
What Works Clearinghouse Reviewed: Does Not Meet Evidence Standards
IES Cited: ED502502