Many high schoolers hoping to attend George Washington University in Washington, D.C., one of the top private universities in the country, breathed a sigh of relief this week.
GWU announced it will no longer require applicants to take the SAT or ACT.
The move comes after the school formed a task force to study the pros and cons of going "test-optional." GWU attracts lots of high-achieving students who do well on both exams, but the task force concluded that the school's reliance on these tests was excluding some high-achieving students who simply don't test well.
While many of their friends are hanging out at the mall or playing video games at home during the summer, about 40 high school sophomores and juniors are spending their vacation days in class. But unlike a typical summer school… this program actually pays them to be there.
One thing these students all have in common is that they're all Latino males who attend either Northridge or Greeley Central High School. Another common characteristic: they're all considered at high risk of dropping out of school before getting a diploma.
Virginia Savage lives in a part of north St. Louis, Mo., that's filled with vacant buildings, including Marshall Elementary. It has been closed for years now, and vines crawl into the building's smashed-out windows. The playground is littered with empty liquor bottles.
Savage went to school at Marshall as a young girl, and now she sees bigger problems beyond all those blemishes: "Drug dealers, drug users, eyesore. That's what I see."
In St. Louis, the student enrollment is one-fourth the size it was in the 1960s. That drop has led the district to close 30 or so schools.
If you looked at the children at the edge of Conrad Cooper's pool, you'd think you were watching an ad for something. Jell-O, maybe. Or a breakfast cereal kids like. They're that cute.
They're lined up on the steps in the shallow end, 10 little ones, ranging from age 2 to 5. The boys are in board trunks, many wearing rash-guard shirts like the weekend surfers they might become years from now. The girls wear bright one-piece suits and two-pieces that show their childish potbellies.