In the race to help Latino students, one California county pulls ahead

Since 2014, Riverside County has expanded services for students including access to counselors and help with financial aid forms. One result: the county’s graduation rate shot up to 89 percent in 2016, putting it in range of Orange County.

Published Dec. 13, 2017

MORENO VALLEY, CALIF.––High school senior Raymond Franco made three mistakes on his college application.

They were little things, like putting “2017” instead of “2018” as his graduation year. They probably wouldn’t have made a dent in his chances at getting into his schools of choice – the 17-year-old takes three advanced placement classes and trains with three different sports teams.

Then again, Mr. Franco says, maybe they would have. “If you mess up on one thing, it can mess up your whole application,” he says.

Which is why he was thankful that Rancho Verde High School devoted several class periods this fall to helping students fill out college and financial aid applications. Faculty and counselors were present to answer questions, explain requirements, and – as in Franco’s case – spot errors. For Franco, whose parents have little experience with college, having hands-on support in class was crucial.

“It was really helpful having the teachers there,” he says. “They check off everything.”

Read the rest at csmonitor.com.

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