A recent report from Jobs for the Future found that that nearly 60 percent of students enrolling in the nation’s community colleges must take remedial classes to build their basic academic skills. For low-income students and students of color, the figure topped 90 percent at some colleges. Remedial classes cost taxpayers more than $2 billion a year, money that is mostly wasted as few students even complete the classes, let alone continue on to graduate.
The grants announced today will fund the Developmental Education Initiative, which will build upon the most promising programs developed through Achieving the Dream: Community Colleges Count, a multi-year national initiative to boost graduation rates at community colleges, particularly among low-income students and students of color. The remedial education models developed by the 15 community colleges receiving these grants represent some of the most promising work in the country aimed at boosting college completion rates among struggling students.
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