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Today’s RRS – Boylan, ACE and the Leadership and Learning Academy – Any comments?

What do you think about the three articles appearing in today’s Rockford Register Star concerning  three of our area’s high school environments?  It isn’t just money – many of Boylan’s students are on needs-based scholarships – maybe parental involvement, like the Gifted program at Auburn High School?

Excerpts:

Boylan Catholic High School’s Class of 2010 has received $15,541,310 in college scholarships, setting a school record for scholarship dollars earned by a graduating class.

One hundred eighteen members of 262 graduates reported scholarship offers. Annually, 97 percent of Boylan graduates go on to post-secondary education.

 Second article,

Applications are available for students to attend the Rockford School District’s Academic Career Education High School.

ACE is a traditional high school with standard math, science, English, physical education/health and elective courses, but the school offers education in areas where a work force is in demand, such as health care, law enforcement, manufacturing, aerospace and engineering technologies.

And Finally,

The School Board spent $375,000 for the 66,000-square-foot building, 1907 Kishwaukee St., to house the Leadership and Learning Academy, an alternative high school for students with disciplinary problems.

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13 Comments

  1. monkey

    Congrats to Boylan. Great that they are snagging those dollars; since college tuition is becoming so expensive, scholarships and other financial aid are the only way a lot of kids can afford it.

    Great that RPS has developed the ACE school. Those fields are going to continue to be in demand. Glad they are recognizing that and prepping students for those careers.

    The LLA is a good thing if it can turn kids with discipline problems around.

  2. Futbol

    Way to go Boylan. When people think Boylan they think athletics but the academics are outstanding. Go Titans.

  3. The equation here is that students who do well have parents who care and are involved. The education at Boylan is not better but they have essentially 100% parent involvement.

    As for the scholarships I suspect they did very well but doubt that the math is correct as $15,541,310 divided by the 118 students receiving means $131,706 per student which means the parents are elated as the average four year college is running only $25,000-35,000 per year so all 118 essentially have full scholarships that would make national news if true.

    Would you clear this up Ted as to correct number. I know that Guildford seniors received about $1.6 million in scholarships this year and would guess that the decimal point is off by one on your Boylan number. I realize that your source is RRS but facts should at least be given a logical look (this one is easy a math problem) before accepting them even if your only putting them in your blog.

  4. monkey

    Good catch, Mike. I didn’t even pay attention to the math on that but I’m sure your’e right.

    Interesting to see who else responds to Ted’s bait on this topic.

  5. monkey

    Actually, I may have replied too soon. The Boylan number may indeed be correct, though a little misleading. No one pays list rate for college. And, many students whose parents make too much money for needs-based grants, loans, etc, are still eligible for merit-based scholarships.

    So, a kid who gets an academic or athletic free ride to a school that charges $30,000 per year for tuition, room/board, might be able to say he/she received $120,000 in a scholarship and the high school probably touts it as such. But, in reality, no one is paying that full rate.

    Either way, this is a great accomplishment. Just need to be a little more accurate with true numbers.

  6. The 15 millon + was attributed to 118 students which pretty much means they all got a free full scholarship which would be outstanding but still I doubt even if you play games with the numbers that this is true and if it is it is great. Guilford had around 100 students with scholarships of some type a similar number as Boylan but for Boylan students to have received 10 times as much would be amazing. I included the room and board number as I just got done paying for U of I student and average yearly total cost of $18-20,000 per year quite a bit less than the $131,000 average that is in the number Ted has posted. Even the average 2009 cost of a Catholic College was only around $28,000 a year (online source). But if that number is true it is as I said amazing.

  7. educationiste

    Maybe those students got scholarship offers from several colleges and need based aid in addition. Could add up to 15 million. Of course, each student will only attend one college at a time.

  8. Mary Kaull

    I am Mary Kaull, the assistant editorial page editor of the RRS, and I think I can clear this up. Boylan has graduating seniors submit every scholarship they have received. In my daughter and son’s case, they received scholarships to a number of schools they were admitted to but did not end up attending. Does that make the numbers any clearer?

  9. Educationiste that would be playing fast with the facts and Ted does have “fact based discussion” on his banner. And the mini article says received not offers big difference again and as this comes from a Catholic “religious” institution we are going to beleive that truth is a matter that counts. Based on the information in Ted’s blog it would seem that the 118 students each are going to get $131,000 in scholarships on average. Any parent with a student in college or recently paid for one to go can tell you that $131,000 would be cause for celebration.

  10. Ted Biondo

    Yes, it does look as if 118 seniors received full scholarships for 4 years at the high end of the tuition scale. However, I think Mary has adequately explained how the data was obtained from the Boylan process.

    Educationiste looks like he hit the nail on the head, matching Mary’s explanation almost exactly.

    Mike, I think you are splitting hairs with the word “received” in the article. The words “offers received”, or “accepted” may have better clarified the amount of scholarships, but you seemed to have totally missed the part about 97% go on to post secondary education. If I split hairs on your comment, would the fact that you wrote that Boylan being a Catholic and religious institution, and we are going to beleive that truth is a matter that counts – Does that mean that the truth doesn’t matter in all nonCatholic or nonreligious schools or does it simply mean that Catholic and religious institutions value truth more and it’s expected of them?

    Also, Mike, I do think all students going to college on a scholarship is a cause for celebration!

    BTW, you have all set a new standard for number crunching in future comments. I will expect the same scrutiny when you all have to look at the latest CBO numbers on Obama’s healthcare. It adds to the deficit by billions!

  11. What Mary is saying I believe is that the offers for one student may have been made from 5 schools but only 1 is being attended and therefore only 1 is “Acutally” being accepted by the student. Yes you can as a matter of semantics say all were received but they can not all be accepted. So while 5 schools may have offered $50,000 for a total of $250,000 to a single student only one was taken for $50,000 so the $15 million is not actually correct based on how you put it Ted as the parents are not getting $15 millino in assistance.based on how Mary explained it. As you said they recieved while Mary said they were offered in this case offered and received are not one in the same. This is how things get looked at in a skewed way. In reality the students may only physically get a million dollars still a great number..but not so sensational as $15 million when marketing a school. In reality RRS cannot report on what the Boylan students actually get. Only when a student accepts the schools offer are they actually received in the sense of paying for the education. Guilford was reporting scholarships that students had accepted. So the question is how much of the $15 million was accepted? I realize that one you will not be able to answer.

  12. Marcus

    I’ll second what Mike said:
    Lack of clarification in wording when comparing stats can be interpreted as skewing the information. Every effort should be made to present clear, comparable metrics when presenting a point for the public to ponder.

  13. Educationiste

    Keith School has been in the habit of announcing figures like this for their graduating class and I think it is great news that scholarship offers are being publicized by more and more schools and that the dollar figure goes up each year. This should be front page news. One part of closing the \\"achievement gap\\" that is very hard to communicate to students is that some don\\\’t see the financial point of putting in hours of study to do well academically. The payoff comes with these multiple scholarship offers. It literally pays to be a good student. College can be affordable. There are many scholarships for merit and for need-based aid and they are out there waiting.

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