The To&Through project provides case studies, toolkits, issue briefs, and other resources you can use to help propel more students to and through high school and college

First came the research, then the data—it’s when schools got the resources and support to put all that into practice that we saw a dramatic spike in student outcomes.

Janice Jackson
Chief Education Officer, Chicago Public Schools

The To&Through Project provides stakeholders in Chicago and beyond with robust tools and models on how to translate To&Through research and data into practice. Explore To&Through's case studies, toolkits, issue briefs, and other resources to find tools you can use to help propel more students to and through high school and college.

Explore the Resources for Getting To&Through

High School
College
High School Milestones
College Milestones
The To&Through Project's resources provide high school stakeholders with robust tools and models, including: case studies of diverse high schools, issue briefs summarizing key research on and improvement strategies for success factors like grades and attendance, and the Network for College Success's Freshman OnTrack Toolkit which provides a complete roadmap for the groundwork that helped Chicago raise its high school graduation rate by 17 points in less than a decade. Explore the resources below for tools you can use to move more students to and through high school:
The To&Through Project provides stakeholders with resources designed to help promote college success, including: issue briefs summarizing key research on and improvement strategies for success factors like college choice as well as case studies highlighting how diverse high schools and colleges are putting To&Through into action. Explore the resources below for tools to help you move more students to and through college:
Filters
The To&Through Project: Freshman On-Track Toolkit
Toolkit

Freshman OnTrack Toolkit

The Network for College Success's Freshman OnTrack Toolkit is a collection of protocols, reports, resources, and artifacts used by experienced coaches in their daily work to help schools better support students through the critical first year of high school. 

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
To&Through In Action: Attendance and Freshman On Track culture at UChicago Charter School
Story

How did UChicago Charter dramatically improve attendance and foster a college-going culture?

Learn how UChicago Charter School fostered a college-going culture and 98 percent attendance across all four of the school’s campuses, which span preschool through high school and serve 1900 students on Chicago’s south side.

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
Story

Jessica Vargas - George Washington High School Class of 2017

"From freshman year, make college the norm."

What are some of the challenges you’re facing on your path To&Through college? 

In the first week of school, we all made a list of our fears—getting in, affording it, not knowing if our GPA and ACT are high enough, not knowing how to start a scary and stressful process. But our counselors have emotionally prepared us to go through the process. We’ve always been supported in getting accustomed to going to college and having that as an expectation. 

 

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
Video

Jessica Vargas To&Through Video

High school senior Jessica Vargas shares how the community can help a student succed in getting to and through college. 

Milestones
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
Story

Mark Blanchard - Graduate of UChicago Charter School and Oberlin College, MFA student at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago

"A good place to start is to think, 'How can I help one student?' Then grow from there." 

What would you say to a student who is struggling to stay on track to graduate from high school?

Before you learn to walk, sometimes you fall. We’re working ourselves up to success, so don’t give up if you stumble. A part of working up to that success is welcoming the failure that comes first. It’s not something to be afraid of.

 

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
Video

Selena Torres

Selena shares why the One Million Degrees program helped her earn her associate degree and decide to pursue a bachelor's degree. 

Milestones
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
Story

Selena Torres - One Million Degrees scholar, graduate of Chicago City Colleges, University of Illinois electrical engineering student

“Show us that college is possible, give us the confidence and support to apply, and work with us to reach outside our comfort zone.”

 

Who has inspired you on your path To&Through college?

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
The To&Through Online Tool overview
Document

The To&Through Online Tool Overview

The To&Through Online Tool makes data on the milestones that research shows matter most for students’ high school and college success available to a broad range of education stakeholders in one, online hub for the  rst time. Get a handy guide to what district and school leaders, school partners, families, and policymakers can do with the tool in the online tool overview. 

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
The To&Through Project Overview
Document

The To&Through Project Overview

The To&Through Project provides educators, policymakers, and families with research, data, and resources on the milestones that matter most for college success so that, together, we can close the gap between our students’ college aspirations and attainment. Get a quick digest of To&Through's mission and components in the project overview. 

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
To&Through Issue Brief: Attendance
Document

To&Through Issue Brief: Attendance

Research from the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research shows that attendance is important for all students. A student’s attendance strongly influences his or her grades, which is why almost all freshmen with strong attendance pass their classes. Learn more about why attendance matters and some strategies schools are using to improve it.

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
To&Through Issue Brief: Freshman On-Track
Document

To&Through Issue Brief: Freshman OnTrack

Research from UChicago Consortium shows that freshman year is a make-it-or-break-it year for high school students. Course performance in the freshman year of high school is the most predictive indicator of whether a student will drop out of high school—more predictive than race, ethnicity, poverty level, and prior test scores combined. Learn more about why Freshman OnTrack matters and strategies schools are using to improve the ninth grade transition. 

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
To&Through Issue Brief: Grades
Document

To&Through Issue Brief: Grades

UChicago Consortium research has shown that a student’s Grade Point Average (GPA) is a better predictor of college success than his or her test scores. Grades are so important because they capture many of the noncognitive aspects of students’ work habits that test scores miss, such as executive functioning, academic perseverance, and growth mindset. Learn more about why grades matter and strategies schools are using to improve students' academic achievement. 

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
Cover Image
Document

UChicago Consortium Guides to Freshman OnTrack for Students and Parents

Created by the UChicago Consortium, these documents provide a research-based, user-friendly explanation of the Freshman OnTrack metric and how the metric relates to high school graduation and postsecondary outcomes.

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
Cover Image
Document

What Does "On-Track" Mean?

A presentation that introduces the Freshman OnTrack metric to students as well as emphasizing the importance of attendance and grades in freshman year.

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
Filters
To&Through Issue Brief: College Choice
Featured Document

To&Through Issue Brief: College Choice

Regardless of their academic qualifications, students’ likelihood of graduating from a given college mirrors the institutional graduation rate. This is also true for students with strong grades in high school; in fact, college choice matters the most for students with strong academic qualifications. Learn more about why college choice matters and strategies schools are using to help students navigate the college selection process.

Milestones
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
How did Kelly High School increase applications to and enrollment in four-year colleges?
Story

How did Kelly High School increase applications to and enrollment in four-year colleges?

In 2013, only 18 percent of Thomas Kelly High School students were going to a 4-year college, and more than half weren’t enrolling at all. Learn how they dug into the data to address the underlying issues and got 100 percent of seniors applying to three or more schools by 2014-15.

Milestones
  • College Enrollment
To&Through In Action: Improving College Persistence at National Louis University
Story

How did National Louis University improve college persistence and academic achievement?

Insights

National Louis University (NLU), a private nonprofit university based in downtown Chicago that has historically served adult, part-time graduate and undergraduate students, recently reengineered its offerings for first-time, full-time freshmen with the objective of dramatically increasing first-generation college-goers’ access to and ability to complete a bachelor’s degree. 

Milestones
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
How did North Lawndale College Prep motivate students to attain strong grades and attend colleges with high graduation rates?
Story

How did North Lawndale College Prep motivate students to attain strong grades and attend colleges with high graduation rates?

North Lawndale College Prep's data showed that its students with a 3.0 grade point average—“B’s or better”—were finishing college at a rate of 60 percent, whereas student in the 2.5 to 2.9 GPA range were completing their degrees at only half that rate. Learn how North Lawndale raised awareness around the importance of grades and institutional graduation rates to improve student outcomes.

Milestones
  • College Enrollment
How did Washington High School successfully create a new college-going culture?
Story

How did Washington High School successfully create a new college-going culture?

George Washington High School began the 2012-13 school year with a college enrollment rate well below average for Chicago Public Schools—learn what strategies Washington used to improve college enrollment rates from 37 percent in 2009-10 to 59 percent in 2014-15.

Milestones
  • College Enrollment
Story

Jessica Vargas - George Washington High School Class of 2017

"From freshman year, make college the norm."

What are some of the challenges you’re facing on your path To&Through college? 

In the first week of school, we all made a list of our fears—getting in, affording it, not knowing if our GPA and ACT are high enough, not knowing how to start a scary and stressful process. But our counselors have emotionally prepared us to go through the process. We’ve always been supported in getting accustomed to going to college and having that as an expectation. 

 

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
Video

Jessica Vargas To&Through Video

High school senior Jessica Vargas shares how the community can help a student succed in getting to and through college. 

Milestones
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
Story

Mark Blanchard - Graduate of UChicago Charter School and Oberlin College, MFA student at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago

"A good place to start is to think, 'How can I help one student?' Then grow from there." 

What would you say to a student who is struggling to stay on track to graduate from high school?

Before you learn to walk, sometimes you fall. We’re working ourselves up to success, so don’t give up if you stumble. A part of working up to that success is welcoming the failure that comes first. It’s not something to be afraid of.

 

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
Video

Mark Blanchard To&Through Video

Graduate student Mark Blanchard explains that the community is what most helped him get to and through college at Oberlin University. 

Milestones
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
Video

Selena Torres

Selena shares why the One Million Degrees program helped her earn her associate degree and decide to pursue a bachelor's degree. 

Milestones
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
Story

Selena Torres - One Million Degrees scholar, graduate of Chicago City Colleges, University of Illinois electrical engineering student

“Show us that college is possible, give us the confidence and support to apply, and work with us to reach outside our comfort zone.”

 

Who has inspired you on your path To&Through college?

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
The To&Through Online Tool overview
Document

The To&Through Online Tool Overview

The To&Through Online Tool makes data on the milestones that research shows matter most for students’ high school and college success available to a broad range of education stakeholders in one, online hub for the  rst time. Get a handy guide to what district and school leaders, school partners, families, and policymakers can do with the tool in the online tool overview. 

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
The To&Through Project Overview
Document

The To&Through Project Overview

The To&Through Project provides educators, policymakers, and families with research, data, and resources on the milestones that matter most for college success so that, together, we can close the gap between our students’ college aspirations and attainment. Get a quick digest of To&Through's mission and components in the project overview. 

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation
To&Through Issue Brief: Grades
Document

To&Through Issue Brief: Grades

UChicago Consortium research has shown that a student’s Grade Point Average (GPA) is a better predictor of college success than his or her test scores. Grades are so important because they capture many of the noncognitive aspects of students’ work habits that test scores miss, such as executive functioning, academic perseverance, and growth mindset. Learn more about why grades matter and strategies schools are using to improve students' academic achievement. 

Milestones
  • Freshman On-Track
  • High School Graduation
  • College Enrollment
  • College Persistence
  • College Graduation