The Washington Post has a three-part story on some poor children who were told they would receive college tuition from philanthropists while they were in elementary school. Makes for interesting, if not particularly surprising, reading.
As eighth grade ended, it was clear that not everyone would make it to college. . .
Proctor began to alter his definition of success. Back when they were in fifth grade, he was certain that the Dreamers would all go to college. Now, he just hoped that they would grow up to be responsible citizens, that they would be law abiding and employed, that they would stay alive. . . .
In a drawer in his home office, Tracy Proctor keeps a sheet of paper titled “Class of 1995 Final Stats,” a list he once presented to Pollin and Cohen that laid out what he knew about each student they’d adopted at Seat Pleasant. Among its findings: at least 11 of the 59 graduated from four-year colleges; at least three of those 11 attained advanced degrees; at least 12 students completed trade school; six dropped out of high school; what happened to six more remains unknown.
Proctor understands that those numbers are vital to any assessment of the program. He knows that the Dreamers’ high school graduation rate of 83 percent far surpassed Prince George’s overall rate in 1995. He also knows that the vast majority did not finish college, a fact that is true of many Dreamers nationally, according to a summary of several studies by the “I Have a Dream” Foundation.