Gates Foundation Chooses 15 Community Colleges for Grants Under New Program

The Gates Foundation is funding fifteen community colleges across five states in an effort to ramp up remedial education and improve graduation rates for at-risk students. This sorely needed funding should be used for student success courses, coaches who can work personally with these students who often have “developmental” life issues, and teacher training to help all those who interact with these students to be more effective. In addition, these students need community areas where they can study, meet other students, and learn about jobs and careers.

Students who enter college with high needs for remediation also have high life and personal needs. In addition to learning the habits of success, they also need to learn to manage their money, who they spend their time with and the life and family demands which many students face.

To prevent the large number of students who need remediation for the first full year of college, The Gates Foundation should also develop funding for surrounding districts in these areas for high school and middle school programs which promote academic, emotional and social intelligence. Without those programs, we will continue to do triage at the college level with at-risk students, some of who will succeed and others who may fall needlessly through the cracks. It is time for both a short-term plan, which the article below addresses, and a long-term plan, which we all need for a bright economic future that sustains us for years to come.

Chronicle of Higher Education
Charles Huckabee

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has chosen 15 community colleges and five states as grant recipients under a new program intended to improve remedial education at the college level and raise graduation rates, the Associated Press reported on Sunday.

The grants, to be announced today, total nearly $16.5-million and are being awarded to college programs in Connecticut, Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Texas, and Virginia, the news agency reported. Of those states, all but North Carolina are also getting money for state programs in support of remedial education.

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