The Obama administration—along with many other policymakers—talks about the shamefully low graduation rates of certain public high schools, dubbed “dropout factories,” as a key barrier to opportunity. But it turns out the new focus on these low-performing schools obscures what happens later on, when students graduate.

Students who actually manage to graduate from the country’s worst high schools mostly end up at colleges where the failure rates are even worse. Ben Miller and Phuong Ly wrote about just this issue in a piece for the latest Monthly, “College Dropout Factories.”

On September 21st, the Washington Monthly and Education Sector will sponsor a two-part discussion called “Getting to Graduation.” The first panel will feature leading researchers, policymakers and foundation leaders discussing the findings of a Washington Monthly special report “Fighting the High School Dropout Crisis.” The second panel will include congressional and administration officials along with the president of an innovative new university. It will focus on the recently published Washington Monthly College Rankings and will address how the administration can really improve education, all the way to college graduation.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010
8:30 AM to 12:15 PM (EDT)
Registration and Refreshments (8:30 – 9:00 AM)

Resources for the Future Conference Center
1400 16th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20036
(closest Metro: Dupont Circle)

Click here to register for the event.

Note that this will not be Webcast live. The Monthly will provide a video of the event later on.

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Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer