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Achieving High School Graduation: Citizen Schools' Youth Outcomes in Boston

NCJ Number
Date Published
August 2010
44 pages

This final report on the Citizen Schools’ youth outcomes in Boston updates the analyses conducted for the previous, sixth-year report with data from the 2007-08 school year, and takes a final look at the academic trajectories of former participants as they progressed through high school.


This report is the seventh and final update of the Citizen Schools evaluation. Citizen Schools provided an enriched after-school program to low-income youth in sixth through eighth grades, with the purpose of preparing students to achieve long-term academic, social, career, and civic success. To accomplish its mission, Citizen Schools extended the student learning day by offering hands-on opportunities that included career exposure, high school and college preparation, and academic enrichment. This seventh-year report updates the sixth-year report with data from the 2007-08 school year and examines the academic trajectories of former participants as they progressed through high school. Analyses compared students’ selection and persistence in a top-tier high school, school engagement, academic achievement, and progress toward and achievement of high school graduation. Evaluators found that former 8th Grade Academy participants were more than twice as likely than matched nonparticipants to enroll and persist in a top-tier high school. Overall, former participants were more than three times as likely to enroll and complete all four years of high school as the matched comparison students. High school engagement findings were consistent with previous reports; they indicated that, on average, former Citizen Schools participants had significantly higher attendance rates in high school than matched nonparticipants. Citizen Schools participation was also associated with higher math performance; participants also outperformed their matches on some English Language Arts (ELA) indicators but fared similarly to their peers on others. Overall, the final report indicates that participation in Citizen Schools was associated with successful high school transitions and long-term benefits, especially the successful completion of high school, compared to the nonparticipant control group.

Date Published: August 1, 2010