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This blog contains posts from the Education & Youth impact area at FSG.
Posted by: FSG on 3/10/2014

by Matt Wilka and Kate Tallant

To Davos, CGI, and Beyond - Seeking a New Role for Business in Education

This post discusses FSG's recent work surrounding shared value in the global education sector and consultants experiences presenting at Davos and other events.

Posted by: Efrain Gutierrez on 8/19/2013

Something beautiful about working in philanthropy is that we have the opportunity to connect our work with larger movements that are at the core of our values and our deepest passions.  A few days ago I had the opportunity to connect my personal passion for Latino student success with the work I do at FSG and link that with the broader context of the civil rights movement. I want to share my story with you to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. 

Posted by: Jeff Cohen on 6/24/2013

It’s common knowledge among parents that your children’s friends have a big influence on their attitudes and ambitions. A recent study, published in the February 2013 American Educational Research Journal, suggests that perhaps parents should be even more concerned with their children’s friends’ parents. Hua-Yu Cherng and his colleagues Jessica Calarco and Grace Kao have found that the educational attainment level of the mother of a child’s best friend has a surprisingly powerful effect on the likelihood that the student will complete college. Using the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, Cherng, Calarco and Kao set out to trace the impact that having “resource-rich” best friends has on college completion.

Posted by: Jeff Cohen on 3/20/2013

This past Sunday, the New York Times ran a front-page article on a new study by Caroline M. Hoxby of Stanford and Christopher Avery of Harvard. I urge anyone who has an interest in college access and success issues to read it. Hoxby and Avery looked at high-achieving (top 4%) high school seniors across income quartiles and found that only 34 percent of high-achieving high school seniors in the bottom fourth of income distribution attended any one of the country’s 238 most selective colleges. Among top students in the highest income quartile that figure was 78 percent.

Even more striking to me was the accompanying graphic (see below) showing students' college application strategies by income quartile, which shows that 53% of high-achieving students in the lowest income quartile apply to NO schools that are a match for them academically, compared to 11% of high-income students. The problem with this is that attending less selective schools than they are qualified for makes it much less likely that these students will actually graduate. And they certainly won't be attending more selective schools if they're not even applying to them.

Posted by: Education & Youth on 2/20/2013

By Rex Babiera, current independent education consultant and freelance writer, and former Director of Learning and Communications at The Ball Foundation’s Education Initiatives

After attending a panel of students on the verge of dropping out of school, Francisco Escobedo, Superintendent of Chula Vista (California) Elementary School District, told a group of educators (including me), “Their number one reason they may drop out is because schooling is boring to them.” No doubt, boredom stifles learning. When I started my teaching career in my twenties, I was an enthusiastic, but somewhat naïve high school science teacher. The last thing I wanted to do was to bore my students with a lesson. So I did a lot of fun demonstrations, included unconventional lab activities, and asked my students to work together often so that they might motivate one another. Looking back on this twenty years later, however, I think I may have mistaken entertainment for engagement. When applied to learning, engagement, not entertainment, is the opposite of boredom. Entertainment and fun are outcomes of engagement, not the other way around. Think about something, anything—a subject, a set of skills, a vocation, or a hobby—that you know deeply. How did you come to know it so well? Probably you took something you really enjoyed, chose to find out as much about it as possible, met people who shared what they knew, and shared what you found with others who were just as interested in it as you were. And learning was a pleasure in itself. In his TED talk, “The Child-driven Education,” Professor Sugata Mitra related this quote from author Arthur C. Clarke: “Where there is interest, education happens.”

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