How can we work around barriers that inhibit families from making informed high school choices?

We supported The Education Trust—New York on two data visualization projects that make New York State high school data transparent and accessible to families.

The first is a data visualization tool that shows the percentage of seniors with a completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) in each public high school in each school district in New York State. Consider that 90% of high school seniors who complete the FAFSA go on to college immediately after graduation, compared with 55% who do not. Not only does this tool lead families to more successful schools, it also builds urgency around improving FAFSA completion rates.

The second project is a “To & Through” data visualization tool that allows parents to learn how well a particular high school is doing in educating students to succeed in and graduate from college. (We know that one of the best measures of a high school is whether its students earn a college degree, not whether they graduate or just matriculate at college.) Prior to this project, there was no such public data tool for New York families.

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