The To&Through Project empowers educators, policymakers, and families with the data, research, and resources they need to move more students to and through high school and college.


Over the past decade, Chicago has dramatically improved educational outcomes for tens of thousands of students. Driven by significant systemwide improvements in high school graduation rates and a modest improvement in college enrollment, Chicago's college-attainment almost doubled between 2006 and 2015, with its bachelor's degree attainment index* increasing from 9 percent to 18 percent in less than a decade. Nationally, only 22 percent of all public high school freshmen take a straightforward path to a four-year college and earn their bachelor's degrees, meaning Chicago now has one of the highest college-attainment rates of any major urban center in the country.

Yet even today, the gap between college aspiration and attainment is enormous.

76 percent of CPS high school freshmen aspire to earn a bachelor’s degree, yet only 18 percent of CPS freshmen manage to earn a four-year college degree within 10 years of starting high school. To change this trajectory and raise the bar, families, policymakers, and educators need clear, actionable data on the milestones that research demonstrates are pivotal to high school and college success. The To&Through Project seeks to provide the information and tools necessary to make Chicago the “Attainment City”—a place where every 9th grader who aspires to earn a college degree has the opportunity and support to do so.




School Reports


In 2016, To&Through released an updated District Overview Report that provides a snapshot of Chicago's progress over time, revealing the milestones on the path to and through high school and college on which we've seen the most—and least—progress since 2006:

The dramatic, system-wide improvement in high school completion—driven by Chicago's focus on the ninth grade year and the Freshman On Track indicator—has largely been responsible for the overall increase in the number of Chicago Public Schools students going on to earn a college degree. See the District Overview Report for detailed trends and patterns of the city's progress.




To&Through Individual School Reports provide Chicago public high schools with actionable data on the milestones research demonstrates are pivotal for student success:

[ Coming Soon ] The Fast Facts Attainment Reports will provide individual school data on four key milestones: Freshman On Track, high school graduation, college enrollment, and college graduation. This report will also give high schools data on their students' academic qualifications for college—based on students' GPA and ACT scores—as well as the institutional graduation rates of the ten colleges most frequently attended by each high school's graduates.

[ Available Now ] The College Enrollment Reports provide detailed analyses of the academic achievement, college enrollment, and college match and choice of graduates of individual Chicago public high schools over time. This deep dive on key measures relevant to college enrollment give school leaders, counselors, post-secondary teams, and all concerned adults insight into the strengths and areas for improvement in each school's efforts to support students around this critical milestone in the path to and through college.


Find Your To&Through Individual School Reports:

Facts & Research

Behind The To&Through Project:
An overview of key research

The Urban Education Institute's Consortium on School Research has conducted years of rigorous, applied research on what factors indicate and impact success in the middle grades, high school, and in preparation for college. This research has revealed the critical importance of grades and attendance, engaging instruction, support and monitoring for students, and other key components of success along a student's path to college. The To&Through Project builds on these findings to equip stakeholders with data and tools that support smarter decisions for greater college success.

See an overview of the research behind To&Through »


What matters for college success?
A grade-by-grade guide for students, families, and schools

The Urban Education Institute's Consortium on Chicago School Research has conducted years of rigorous, applied research on what factors indicate and impact success in the middle grades, high school, and in preparation for college.

The To&Through Project infographic poster provides a printable, grade-by-grade guide of these key findings—giving students, families, and educators an easy reference on the levers that matter for college success.

Download the To&Through Grade-by-Grade Guide Poster »


25 years of research from the Urban Education Institute's Consortium on School Research

At a time when a college degree is more important than ever, The To&Through Project's tools and data reports build on years of our research pinpointing what really matters to equip stakeholders—students, families, high school counselors, principals, philanthropists, district leaders, and higher education officers—with the information they need to put more students on the path to college success.