A high school diploma is not only the precursor to postsecondary enrollment, but, on average, high school graduates make at least $10,000 more annually than individuals who did not complete high school. In Kenosha County, this is especially pronounced, as those without a high school diploma are 42% less likely to be employed. When young adults have better employment options, this ripples throughout the community: Those with at least a high school diploma usually have better health outcomes, their children have greater opportunity, and more money is available for businesses and government services.
The Work So Far
The network has spent its young life creating a foundation for the work to be done. As important as knowing what the work is, is knowing why the work needs to happen, what it needs to address, and what success looks like. This is why, with a specific eye toward racial equity, the team identified its shared measures, goal, and - with a combination of focus groups, research, and lived experience - identified factors influencing high school graduation that they will be addressing in the coming years.
The network will continue on its path exploring several pilots, including expanding transportation options to students and providing families and school staff with more mental health information and access. These will follow a similar path: Identify the strategy and measurement, application of continuous improvement, assessment, and expansion - if the strategy proves successful.
The best part of Building Our Future is getting all of the right people in one room, working toward a common goal. We all do great work, but if our efforts are not collaborative and moving in the same direction, our impact is that much less.”
Education is the key that unlocks the door to future prosperity. Building Our Future wants to ensure that everyone in our community understands this and does their part to ensure our students are graduating high school ready to pursue higher education or begin their careers."
I am honored to be a part of Building Our future. Born and raised in this community and now working in this community. I take great pride in this network. This network is bringing together all entities of our community for the purpose of collectively improving the lives of all who dwell here. The network is made up of leaders from the business area, non-profit agencies, healthcare providers, educators, etc. all working together, aligning our efforts for the greater good."
For more data and analysis, visit https://www.buildingourfuturekc.org/high-school-completion1.html