Chipotle Offers Education Benefits. Should You?

Posted by Kate Mosteller on 7/30/15 3:00 PM

Chipotle Mexican Grill is the latest company kicking its employee benefits up several notches in an effort to attract and retain workers for entry-level positions. Starting July 1, the restaurant company now offers hourly workers full tuition reimbursement, paid vacations days and paid sick time. What started out as an unknown quick-service restaurant in 1993 has grown into a company that empowers its employees to become leaders and embark on a career path.

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Topics: Employee Retention

5 Fears of Adult Students: How to Curb Back-to-School Phobia

Posted by Kate Mosteller on 7/29/15 12:00 PM

The number of college students who are 25 years or older continues to grow, and this number is expected to outpace younger students in the coming years. The National Center for Education Statistics predicts that adult students will actually become the new majority. Between 2012 and 2013, students younger than 25 increased by 12 percent, whereas students older than 25 jumped ahead by 20 percent.

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Topics: College Enrollment & Retention, Colleges & Career Schools

It’s Time to Reimagine No Child Left Behind – Part I

Posted by Kevin Bauman on 7/28/15 9:30 AM

The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB) was a reauthorization of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (the ESEA). The aim was to improve education for disadvantaged students and set in place accountability measures for Title 1 public schools.  Refreshingly bipartisan in nature, the Act was proposed by the Bush Administration, coauthored by Representatives John Boehner (R-OH), George Miller (D-CA), and Senators Edward Kennedy (D-MA) and Judd Gregg (R-NH). With the swift passing of the bill through both the House of Representatives and the Senate, it was clear that both sides of the aisle supported making education a priority.

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Topics: Industry News, Opportunity Youth

Relationships Matter: Working Together to Improve the Lives of At-Risk Youth

Posted by Kevin Bauman on 7/24/15 10:00 AM

Big Brothers Big Sisters is a well-known national organization that, similar to Penn Foster, is in the business of changing lives. Through a matching process that pairs a caring adult – (the “Big”) with kids in need of adults in their lives (the “Littles”) remarkable relationships are formed and the lives of children are positively impacted in a big way.

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Topics: Penn Foster News & Events, Opportunity Youth

Some of the Nation’s Top Corporations Just Did Something Amazing

Posted by Bliss Parsons on 7/23/15 3:30 PM

On Monday, July 13, seventeen of the nation’s largest corporate giants have joined Starbucks CEO, Howard Schultz, in launching a partnership committed to connecting 100,000 of our nation’s young people to career opportunities by 2018. To address the plight of disconnected young adults, the coalition has launched the 100,000 Opportunities Initiative.

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Topics: Middle Skills Gap, Employee Retention, Opportunity Youth

Will California Finally Eliminate Its State Exit Exam?

Posted by Bliss Parsons on 7/22/15 12:00 PM

A new California bill, SB 172, passed by the state Senate on June 1st, is currently being reviewed by the state Assembly and is awaiting a vote. The new bill would to allow students to graduate high school without having to take the required California High School Exit Examination (CAHSEE). The exit exam would be suspended  for three years starting in the 2016-17 school year, then a reevaluation would take place based on an advisory panel conducted by the State’s Superintendent of Public Instruction. The panel would would decide whether to eliminate or replace the exit exam with another exam or with alternative requirements. The California School Boards Association and the California Teachers Association are in full support of SB 172.

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Topics: High School Completion, Industry News

FAPSC 2015: A New Enrollment Strategy to Generate Qualified Starts

Posted by Lauren Mackie on 7/21/15 11:30 AM

Next week Penn Foster will head to Boca Raton, Florida to attend the Florida Association of Private Schools and Colleges (FAPSC) 2015 Annual Administrator Conference for the second year in a row. Celebrating “The Art of Education,” this special two-day conference will host training, professional development and networking opportunities for over 300 school administrators, owners, and campus directors. While in Boca Raton, Penn Foster will also host an Admissions breakout session presentation to discuss How to Generate Qualified Starts with a New Enrollment Strategy.

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Topics: Industry News, College Enrollment & Retention

4 Ways to Prepare for Gainful Employment and Improve Student Outcomes

Posted by Jim Bittl on 7/16/15 1:00 PM

In October 2014, the U.S. Department of Education announced regulations ensuring career colleges provide career training programs that guide students toward success and protect students from student loan debt that they would be unable to repay. Known as "gainful employment (GE) in a recognized occupation," these regulations hold career colleges accepting federal funds accountable for cutting costs and improving student outcomes.1

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Topics: Industry News

A Closer Look at How the Guidance Counselor Crisis Affects Students

Posted by Ray McNulty on 7/15/15 9:00 AM

For some, going to college is merely a stepping stone on the road to a bigger goal, one that includes a clear career path and the means to achieving long-held dreams. Yet even for this privileged group of students, the high school-to-college transition is filled with insecurity and uncertainty. Add the extenuating circumstances that often plague low-income and minority communities, and it’s easy to understand how for some, the route to college or a career is wrought with obstacles.

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Topics: High School Completion

Are Recent College Graduates Succeeding? Results Are In

Posted by Bliss Parsons on 7/13/15 1:00 PM

The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) recently published a first-ever national survey on college and university graduate ‘first-destination/post-graduation’ outcomes. The survey based results from 207 member institutions utilizing the same survey methodology, measuring graduate outcomes from both bachelors and associate degree programs. With this new study, NACE hopes to provide a baseline to determine future trends in education and labor.

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Topics: Industry News, College Enrollment & Retention

5 Skills Career Schools Need to Teach for Gainful Employment Compliance

Posted by Douglas Carlson on 7/9/15 10:00 AM

Under the U.S. Department of Education's new Gainful Employment regulations, graduates of career colleges must exceed specific earnings-to-debt ratios for their institutions to continue to receive federal student aid. One challenge colleges seeking to meet these requirements face is employers are often looking for skills not taught in textbooks. According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers Job Outlook 2015 survey, the skill set most frequently sought by employers screening candidates' resumes is leadership and teamwork.1 And Hart Research Associates found that 93 percent of employers weigh skills in areas such as critical thinking, communication and problem-solving more heavily than an academic major when considering candidates.2 These findings suggest that career colleges should incorporate such job skills into their curriculum to improve their graduates' gainful employment outlooks.

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Topics: Industry News

How to Help First-Generation Career College Students Succeed

Posted by Ray McNulty on 7/8/15 1:00 PM

Only 10.9 percent of low-income students who are first in their family to attend college achieve a Bachelor's Degree within six years, according to Pell Institute data.1 This contrasts starkly with 24.1 percent for non-first-generation low-income students and 54 percent for students who are neither first-generation nor low-income. First-generation students face additional obstacles for various reasons, including absence of role models and social support, insufficient academic preparation, lack of specialized academic support, greater financial burdens than other students, and language barriers. Career colleges can help alleviate some of these factors by adopting measures to assist first-generation students.

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Topics: Middle Skills Gap, College Enrollment & Retention

Beyond Tuition Assistance: 4 Ways Employers Can Support Continuing Education for Workers

Posted by Kevin Bauman on 7/7/15 9:30 AM

Starbucks made headlines in early June when the coffee giant announced plans to offer employees full tuition to Arizona State University’s online program. The company’s current college achievement program already offered two years of undergraduate tuition at ASU, and now baristas can earn a free bachelor’s degree.

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Topics: High School Completion, Employee Retention, Employers

3 Key Career School Strategies to Get Ready for Gainful Employment Compliance

Posted by Garth Fasano on 7/2/15 1:00 PM

Career colleges are getting ready for Gainful Employment. As institutional and program effectiveness specialist Amanda Opperman describes, schools will soon be required to submit an avalanche of student data for the years 2008 to 2015.1 But this is just preliminary to the larger task of achieving compliance with minimum requirements for student loan repayment rates and debt-to-income ratios. Facing this challenge will require implementing effective strategies to ensure that institutional performance is in compliance with Gainful Employment standards.

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Topics: High School Completion, Industry News

How to Improve High School Graduation Rates within Latino Communities

Posted by Ray McNulty on 7/2/15 11:30 AM

In 2014, our nation's high school graduation rate topped 80 percent for the first time in U.S. history.Hispanic/Latino students were the subgroups with the greatest improvements in graduation rates. Between 2006 and 2012, the graduation rates of Latino students grew 15 percentage points. This fast-growing student population also increased 4.2 percentage points from 2011 to 2013 in Adjusted Cohort Graduation Rate (ACGR) reporting, according to "Building a Nation, Executive Brief: Overview of 2012-13 High School Graduation Rates."

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Topics: High School Completion, College Enrollment & Retention, Opportunity Youth


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