American Graduate Joins National Leaders at White House Summit on Next Generation High Schools

Posted by Dale Fisher on


St. Louis, MO, November 10, 2015 – Responding to President Obama’s call in this year’s State of the Union Address to reinvent American high schools to allow more students to seize opportunities in today’s economy, public media’s American Graduate initiative will participate today in Washington, D.C., in the first-ever White House Summit on Next Generation High Schools.

The Summit is convening students, educators, philanthropists and entrepreneurs from across the country who will identify ways in which American high schools can promote personalized learning, work-based learning experiences, deeper ties to post-secondary, and include a focus on expanding science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) opportunities for girls and other groups of students who are underrepresented in these high-growth, well-paying fields.

Heeding the Summit’s call to action, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting will, through American Graduate, support stories for broadcast about new approaches to high school education across the country. Local stations will host community conversations and will provide PBS Learning Media resources to educators for use in their classrooms. Students will create digital content, including news reports, for programs such as the PBS NewsHour Student Reporting Labs.

“Organized around American Graduate, a diverse range of public media colleagues and other partners across the country has for several years been building a national movement committed to improving youth outcomes,” said Jack Galmiche, president and CEO of the Nine Network of Public Media. “The Summit offers American Graduate an opportunity to expand and energize that movement, putting the U.S. on a path to achieve a 90 percent graduation rate by 2020.”

Indeed, for many years, American Graduate has been showcasing ways in which high schools can prepare more of youth for success in the 21st century workplace. In the last year and a half alone, public media stations participating in American Graduate have:

  • Shared more than 38 million resources on air, online, and in the community.
  • Created positive opportunities to celebrate American Graduate Champions, caring consistent adults in the lives of young people, celebrating more than 8,000 American Graduate Champions.
  • Broadcast nearly 12,000 hours of content and engaged 432,088 community members in 3,281 community gatherings and events, helping communities seek solutions associated with increasing the graduation rate.
  • Deployed digital platforms to spotlight relevant issues around the dropout crisis, achieving more than 7 million web views. Twitter chats, infographics, social media campaigns and more have played a critical role in encouraging communities to discuss and act on improving youth outcomes, with nearly 24,000 Twitter and Facebook posts.

At the Nine Network our own American Graduate initiative has most recently included:

  • A community town hall, Suspended Futures: The School Discipline Debate, focused on alternative ways of reaching young people and keeping them in school. (Broadcast November 9 at 7:00 p.m.; repeats November 15 at 10:00 a.m. and November 22 at 11:00 p.m.; available online at
  • Created the space and impetus for innovative partnerships with schools and education advocates to generate dialogue on new ways of engaging teachers and youth.
  • Empowering young people to find their voices and providing them innovative tools through Nine Lab digital storytelling and production classes to express their own stories and challenges and engage in peer-to-peer conversations.

About American Graduate

American Graduate is public media’s long-term commitment to supporting community-based solutions to the dropout crisis. Supported by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), more than 100 public radio and television stations have joined forces with more than 980 partners and at- risk schools across 40 states.

About the Nine Network of Public Media

The Nine Network of Public Media is a multifaceted public media organization creating a network of individuals and organizations empowered by public media to strengthen civic life. One of the nation’s most watched public television stations, Nine offers the people of the St. Louis region multiple ways to explore the world and become engaged in civic life, including the Nine Center for Public Engagement, Nine Lab, and four distinct broadcast channels (Nine PBS, Nine World, Nine Create and Nine Kids). The Nine Network’s rich legacy of serving the community was launched in 1954 and continues through our mission of bringing St. Louis together as we connect our region to the world and the world to St. Louis.

For More Information Contact:

Matt Huelskamp
Vice President, Chief Marketing Officer
(314) 512-9117