December 15th, 2014 | APSF-admin
December 15, 2014 – The Aurora Public Schools Foundation is excited to announce that it has received a $75,000 Colorado Opportunity Scholarship Initiative (COSI) grant from the state of Colorado.
The state initiative’s goal is to create a strong network of career and college readiness programs across Colorado, while also increasing the amount of total scholarship giving available for postsecondary students.
The APS Foundation will use the grant money to open its first Future Center at Hinkley High School in the beginning of 2015. Future Centers are an innovative approach to connect Aurora Public Schools (APS) high school students to postsecondary options. Advisors guide students, and their families, through the college application process: how to construct essays, how to apply for financial aid and scholarships, and how to understand the dynamics of postsecondary institutions. Future Centers coordinate closely with the school district, principals and school counselors to complement the pre-collegiate programs already in place and strengthen the college attendance culture in the school. The Future Centers initiative will help to ensure all APS students graduate ready to access and succeed in post-secondary opportunities.
There is an acute need to support APS students in creating and executing postsecondary plans. APS’s four-year graduation rate is 52.6%. This rate drops to 46.8% for Hispanic and Latino students, who make up 55% of the district’s student body. Additionally, APS’s college enrollment rate is 40% (17% lower than the state average). However, earning a postsecondary credential is increasingly necessary to be competitive for jobs in today’s economy. By 2020, 74% of Colorado’s jobs will require some form of postsecondary education.
The Aurora Public Schools Foundation was founded in 1987 as a non-profit organization with the mission to cultivate community investment to enrich student opportunity. The foundation facilitates collaborations between schools and the community, fosters innovations that enable schools and the district to meet the challenges of the future and secures supplemental resources from individuals, corporations and foundations to support programs.