Carmen Gelman and Mary Catherine Swanson with two of Swanson's former students

AVID National Conference Adventures

Several of us on the Epic School Partnerships team just returned from the AVID National Conference in San Diego where we not only had an opportunity to learn from some great educational leaders but had a chance to meet up with old friends, explore new ideas, and collaborate with new folks. Both our founder Dr.…

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Do Students Have Too Many Choices?

In an October 1st, 2015, Washington Post blog about choices, Jay Matthews talks about the community college as a popular starting point for college entrants. However, the numbers that follow are alarming. For every 100 new students at community colleges, only 16 will have earned an associate degree or certificate after three years. After six years, just…

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Retention and Faculty in the Trenches

Repackaged conversations I thoroughly enjoyed Rob Jenkins article, Retention in the Trenches (Chronicle of Higher Education, May 18, 2015) where he reminds us that the current focus on college completion is really just a repackaging of an age old concern: retention. Recently states have begun to factor retention (completion rates) into funding formulas for community…

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Unpacking All Chart Paper

Unpacking the Word All

ALL: is it just the latest slogan or term that we throw around loosely in education? It sounds good: ALL students college and career ready, what is our school doing to prepare ALL students, ALL students prepared for a bright and successful future. But do we really mean ALL? Why should we unpack the word…

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Jay Breslow

Student Voice in School Reform

In 2013, the school board in Philadelphia announced a plan to close 37 schools. The Philadelphia Student Union, an organized group of students that runs campaigns at the local, state, and national levels, showed up to the school board meeting dressed as zombies. They performed a choreographed routine to Michael Jackson’s Thriller and collapsed at…

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