Illinois Tech Joins Compact with CPS and Illinois Universities and Colleges to Increase CPS Completion Rates

Illinois Institute of Technology is partnering with Chicago Public Schools (CPS) and 13 other universities and colleges to form the Chicago Higher Education Compact, a collaboration dedicated to developing solutions to increase college enrollment, persistence, and completion for CPS graduates, with the goal of increasing the college graduation rate for CPS students to 60 percent by 2025.

A report by the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research (CCSR) reveals that an estimated 14 percent of ninth-graders in CPS will earn a four-year college degree within 10 years of starting high school, up from just 8 percent in 2006. Despite the fact that more CPS students are graduating from high school than ever before, the report also calls attention to the fact that many students remain unprepared for college, and that students experience barriers to college completion once enrolled. The Compact seeks to address barriers and enhance preparation.

The school district has solicited the top colleges and universities attended by CPS graduates to join the Compact. So far, the District has received commitments from 14 colleges and universities, in addition to partners at the CCSR, the Illinois Board of Higher Education, Chicago Collaborative for Undergraduate Success, and the Higher Learning Commission–North Central Association, which will serve the Compact in an advisory capacity

CPS is partnering with leaders of colleges and universities to develop solutions and ensure students receive supports to keep them on-track to graduate college once they enroll. Members of the Compact will convene quarterly to share goals, progress, and best practices.

The goal of 60 percent of CPS graduates completing a four-year degree by 2025 will serve as the target for the entire Compact while the school district works collaboratively to set and meet institution-specific goals. Additionally, CPS has committed to growing the high school graduation rate, increasing academic rigor and social/emotional supports to increase college readiness and schools where they can be most successful.