Pathways to Education: An Integrated Approach to Helping At-Risk High School Students

70 Pages Posted: 2 Sep 2014 Last revised: 11 Oct 2014

See all articles by Philip Oreopoulos

Philip Oreopoulos

University of Toronto - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR)

Robert Brown

Toronto District School Board

Adam Lavecchia

McMaster University

Date Written: August 2014

Abstract

Pathways to Education is a comprehensive youth support program developed to improve academic outcomes among those entering high school from very poor social-economic backgrounds. The program includes proactive mentoring to each student, daily tutoring, group activities, career counseling, and college transition assistance, combined with immediate and long-term incentives to reinforce a minimum degree of mandatory participation. The program began in 2001 for entering Grade 9 students living in Regent Park, the largest public housing project in Toronto, and expanded in 2007 to include two additional Toronto projects. In all three locations, participation rates quickly rose, to more than 85 percent, even though parents and students were required to commit in writing to conditions and high expectations of the program. Comparing students from other housing projects before and after the introduction of the program, high school graduation and post secondary enrollment rates rose dramatically for Pathways eligible students, in some cases by more than 50 percent.

Suggested Citation

Oreopoulos, Philip and Brown, Robert and Lavecchia, Adam, Pathways to Education: An Integrated Approach to Helping At-Risk High School Students (August 2014). NBER Working Paper No. w20430. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2490305

Philip Oreopoulos (Contact Author)

University of Toronto - Department of Economics ( email )

150 St. George Street
Toronto, Ontario M5S 3G7
Canada

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR)

180 Dundas Street West, Suite 1400
Toronto, Ontario
Canada

Robert Brown

Toronto District School Board ( email )

Toronto, Ontario
Canada

Adam Lavecchia

McMaster University ( email )

1280 Main Street West
Hamilton, Ontario L8S 4M4
Canada
905-525-9140 (Phone)

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