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Elementary On-Track: Elementary School Students’ Grades, Attendance, and Future Outcomes

Our report Elementary On-Track: Elementary School Students' Grades, Attendance, and Future Outcomes shows that students who had strong grades and attendance in elementary school were more likely to graduate high school and enroll in college than their peers.

Inspired by the success of Freshmen OnTrack (FOT) in high schools, CPS introduced the Elementary On-Track (EOT) indicator in 2018. Like FOT, the EOT indicator also uses grades and attendance data to help educators identify students who need additional support. This research brief offers a simplified version of EOT that we call “Condensed Elementary On-Track” (Condensed EOT). The research findings suggest that elementary and middle school educators can and do provide critical supports that set students up for long-term success when they improve 3rd–8th grade students’ attendance and grades. 

The accompanying To&Through Elementary Milestones Tool enables the public to dive even deeper into the data, providing an interactive interface to explore rates of attainment for CPS middle grades students attending elementary schools in the Chicago Public Schools district.

Picture of Elementary On-Track: Elementary School Students' Grades, Attendance, and Future Outcomes by Alex Seeskin, Thomas Massion, and Alexandra Usher

Read the Report

The elementary and middle years give educators a profound opportunity to impact students’ long-term outcomes: in our research, students with strong grades and attendance in elementary school were more likely to graduate high school and enroll in college than their peers. In this research brief, we offer a simplified version of CPS’s Elementary On-Track (EOT) metric that we call the “Condensed Elementary On-Track” (Condensed EOT). 

Screenshot of Elementary Tool page

To&Through Elementary Milestones Tool

Our new To&Through Elementary Milestones Tool is an interactive data tool that traces the path of CPS students from elementary school (6th-8th grades) to college enrollment. This publicly available tool enables schools to track six key milestones that help illuminate the path towards high school success and college access for their students starting in 6th grade. The tool shows how these milestones have changed over time for 6th-8th grade students at more than 450 CPS schools.