Every child deserves access to a safe, high-quality education, and Big Shoulders serves students from a vast range of ethnic, economic, and religious backgrounds. Each child receives a first-rate education at each of the 77 Big Shoulders Fund schools.
✶ 80% of our students are minorities
✶ 30% of our students are not Catholic
✶ 61% of our elementary students live in poverty
Students at Big Shoulders Fund schools excel with compelling academic results. On average, Big Shoulders Fund elementary students perform above the national average on standardized assessments in math and reading by seventh grade, despite often scoring below the national average as third graders. Big Shoulders Fund high schools have a 95 percent graduation rate, in sharp contrast to large drop-out rates in inner-city high schools around the country. Graduates then go on to enroll in college at rates above their local and national peers, as verified by the National Student Clearinghouse and shown in the chart below. Since Big Shoulders began tracking, 88 percent of all graduating scholars have enrolled in college during the fall following high school graduation. Even more significant, a recent survey of a sample of alumni of Big Shoulders Fund schools showed African-American alumni graduated from college at a rate more than twice the national average and Hispanic alumni graduated at a rate more than three times the national average.