Children who grow up in Cleveland, especially those in predominantly low-income neighborhoods, experience vastly different academic outcomes than those growing up in more affluent areas. Only two out of every three students graduate high school and opportunities for those without a high school diploma or college degree are increasingly disappearing.
In Cleveland, more than half of all people under 18 live in poverty. For residents of all ages, more than 35 percent live in poverty. Cleveland ranks number one as the most segregated city in the nation. Cleveland also ranks as number one in income segregation. Cleveland’s unemployment rate is consistently higher than the state of Ohio and the nation as a whole.
These statistics are not a reflection of our children’s potential.
Children growing up facing these challenges can and do achieve at high levels. The systemic lack of equity for kids in low- income communities inspires us to enlist, develop, and mobilize our nation’s most promising future leaders to grow and strengthen the movement for educational equity. We channel the hopeful, unrelenting spirit in Greater Cleveland by providing a source of diverse, committed talent to local school districts and charter networks.
We work in partnership to help students succeed at the highest levels and fight for the change needed to ensure that one day all students in Greater Cleveland will have the opportunity to attain an excellent education. And while progress is being made, this problem is urgent and the systemic challenges continue to cut short the human potential in thousands of children.