In the past year, the REACH Georgia Program grew from 41 Georgia school systems and 330 students participating to 69 school systems and 685 students participating. The program’s growth and expansion plan is for all 180 Georgia school systems and over 3,600 students to participate by 2020.
Since the program’s launch in 2012, all REACH Scholars are in good standing and eligible to receive their scholarships upon graduation. They are currently minding the ABCs of nationally recognized early success indicators:
- They have attended school regularly.
- They have maintained good behavior.
- They have kept a minimum 2.5 grade point average in rigorous coursework.
Additionally, they have experienced the power of advocacy in meeting regularly with their mentor and academic coach.
Overall, by comparing the two years prior to enrolling and the two years since enrolling in REACH for the 2013 and 2014 cohorts, unexcused absences and disciplinary infractions dropped by 30 percent and 60 percent on average, respectively.
Comparing absenteeism between the two years prior to the two years after joining REACH, the 2013 cohort saw a reduction of 29 percent in unexcused absences while the 2014 cohort saw a 32 percent reduction in unexcused absences.
Comparing discipline infractions between the two years prior and the two years after joining REACH, the 2013 cohort saw a 60 percent reduction of students who caused disciplinary infractions and the total number of infractions dropped by 50 percent. Likewise, the 2014 cohort experienced a 66 percent reduction of students causing disciplinary infractions and a 71 percent reduction of total infractions.
The graduating class of 2017 (the first cohort of REACH Scholars who entered the program in 2012) have improved their grades significantly. At the end of their sophomore year in high school, based on grades alone, 90 percent of these Scholars are on a trajectory for the HOPE Scholarship compared to approximately 49 percent of Georgia’s students who were eligible for HOPE in 2015.