What Do Graduates Need in a 21st Century High School Diploma?

Rudy Ruiz Blog

News broke this month that the nation’s graduation rates again rose to a new high, with more than 84% of public school students graduating on time in 2016. So, what’s next for this crop of graduates? Were they ready for the next steps in life, college and careers? Shockingly few (16%) of their eventual professors and (20% of) employers thought so (ACT National Curriculum Survey, 2016; Achieve Rising to the Challenge Survey, 2015). These rates are not substantially different from the percentage (25%) of 12th graders who scored at or above proficient on the most recent math portion of the so-called Nation’s Report Card (The Condition of Education, NAEP, 2016).

How do we close this glaring preparation gap? How do we ensure that, as technology advances and accelerates industry at an incredible pace, schools are able to provide students with what they need to be successful after high school? …

Beyond Grit: When Having a ‘Growth Mindset’ Isn’t Enough

Rudy Ruiz Blog

As a young Latino from a low-income, inner-city neighborhood who went on to graduate from Stanford, I’m considered by those who know me to be an example of how education and motivation can open any door in our great country. As an educator, I have seen, and even helped with, increasing efforts to build on these concepts by working to instill ‘grit’ and a ‘growth mindset’ in students, from college down to elementary school…

Mentoring Matters: Engaging Students, Changing Lives

Rudy Ruiz Blog

It’s often said that education is a matter of life and death. In Baltimore, educators are reminded of this reality far too often, as violent incidents have struck home among students at an unprecedented rate. While many would give up under such trying circumstances, Principal Tammatha Woodhouse has been recognized for striking back with support and inspiration for her scholars at Excel Academy…