• Roaring Fork PreCollegiate

    Mentoring The First Generation

Pre-Collegiate Program puts kids on track for college success


Jim Noyes
Post Independent
Published Nov. 13, 2011

In a country where roughly 25 percent of high school students drop out and never earn their diplomas, and only one-third of the graduates move on to higher education at the college level, the Roaring Fork Re-1 School District is particularly proud of the outcomes of its unique Pre-Collegiate Program.

Virtually 100 percent of the grades 7-12 students enrolled in Pre-Collegiate as an optional, extra-curricular activity graduate from high school, and an amazing 97 percent have gone on to college.

These results are particularly impressive given that the Pre-Collegiate Program targets first-generation students – those who would be the first in their families to attend college.

Being a trailblazer is never easy, and these first-generation students are expected to overcome cultural, language and financial barriers and do so without the parental guidance that other students have.

The Pre-Collegiate Program was the brainchild of state Sen. Gail Schwartz, D-Snowmass Village, when she sat on the University of Colorado Board of Regents in 2003. She witnessed a very disturbing high school dropout trend in the Roaring Fork Valley, especially among Hispanic students.

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