More than one million students in the United States drop out of high school every single year. Research shows America is facing a high school dropout crisis with low income, urban and minority students most disproportionately affected. After-School All-Stars’ We Are Ready and CampUs initiatives are actively working to reach students before they get to high school, when they’re in that crucial 8th grade year and are preparing to make the transition into high school. Targeting 8th graders who exhibit signs that they are at risk of dropping out, the initiative helps students answer the question: “Why does graduating from high school matter?” while educating them on how to connect their extracurricular passions to success in high school, college and the workforce.
Through its $50,000 grant, Walmart is not only helping After-School All-Stars to solve a national problem, but is also helping to bring high-school preparation into the lives of hundreds of local San Diego students each year. By focusing on improving literacy within high-risk youth populations, Walmart has helped shape a curriculum that infuses promise and possibility into the lives of young participants.