Press Releases

OneGoal Launches New Initiative to Partner with Entire School Districts

CHICAGO, December 13, 2019 — After more than 10 years of partnering with schools across the country to help close the college degree divide between students from low-income communities and their peers from high-income areas, OneGoal is launching a new initiative to deliver their innovative program to entire school districts. The national education nonprofit has received a $4.5 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation over three years to help fund the pilot program, which is expected to launch the fall of 2020.

“Our vision is to deliver the OneGoal program to every student in our partner districts so that they graduate from high school prepared for their chosen postsecondary pathway, whether that’s a four-year university, two-year college, trade school or certificate program,” said Melissa Connelly, CEO of OneGoal. “We are grateful to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for their generosity and support of this initiative to expand our impact at a much larger scale.”

Founded in Chicago in 2007 as an after-school program, OneGoal has grown to reach more than 14,000 students and  evolved into an in-school, credit-bearing class. The three-year, teacher-led program begins during students’ junior year of high school and continues throughout their first year of postsecondary education. OneGoal’s curriculum is also grounded in culturally responsive framework and consists of rigorous lessons covering self-discovery, social-emotional learning, test preparation, and college/career planning.

The current model, which pairs one teacher to a cohort of about 25 students, has been implemented in individual schools in Chicago, Houston, New York City, Massachusetts, Metro Atlanta and the Bay Area. The pilot program, which is expected to launch in fall 2020, will enable OneGoal to partner with select school districts to embed its class into their postsecondary readiness systems and to co-create system-wide solutions that leverage professional learning, curriculum, data and ongoing consultation OneGoal has honed over the past decade.

“We’ve had great success thus far: 88% of OneGoal high school graduates enroll in a postsecondary institution and 79% of those who enroll persist one year after high school,” said Patty Diaz-Andrade, who’s leading the new initiative at OneGoal. “Our vision is to deliver our program to every student in our partner district so that they graduate from high school prepared for their chosen postsecondary pathway and continue to receive critical support as they navigate their first year of college or other postsecondary and/or workforce pathways.”

About OneGoal

OneGoal is a leading college access and success organization that works to close the degree divide and create a more equitable future.  We partner with schools in low-income communities across the country to ensure postsecondary planning, preparation, and support are no longer extracurricular luxuries but integral components of the high school experience. OneGoal is a three-year program that starts as a class in students’ junior and senior years of high school and continues during the critical transitional period through their first year of college or other postsecondary path.  88% of OneGoal high school graduates enroll in a postsecondary institution and 79% of those who enroll persist one year after high school. This year OneGoal will reach some 14,000 by the end of the 2019/20 school year in the Bay Area, Chicago, Houston, Massachusetts, Metro Atlanta, and New York. 

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