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Education Lab Blog

Education Lab is a project to spark meaningful conversations about education solutions in the Pacific Northwest.

January 13, 2014 at 7:15 AM

Today’s story: Dropouts flood Kent’s second-chance iGrad school

Marlon Harris visits the iGrad classroom in Kent where he earned his GED last year. He worked closely with tutor Connie Moriarty, left, and teacher Karna Cristina. Photo by Mike Siegel / The Seattle Times

Marlon Harris visits the iGrad classroom in Kent where he earned his GED last year. He worked closely with tutor Connie Moriarty, left, and teacher Karna Cristina. Photo by Mike Siegel / The Seattle Times

Today’s front-page story by Claudia Rowe examines an unusual program targeting high school dropouts in the Kent School District. Here’s an excerpt:

No one is forced to attend, yet the 18-month-old program has a waiting list, and its popularity has surged. As of December, 540 young people had enrolled, drawn by the promise of a diploma and the dawning realization of what it means to navigate adulthood without one.

‘I’m scared, man. You can’t even get in McDonald’s without a high-school diploma, and I don’t want to be no McDonald’s,’ said Todd Gauthun, 16, standing outside the iGrad storefront a few weeks ago, music dribbling from the earphones stashed in his sagging pants pocket.

He hadn’t touched a textbook since leaving Kent-Meridian High two years ago, and the implications of that choice had now become clear.

‘I hate school,’ he said. ‘But I pray to God I get into this place.’

Read the full story and see more photos here.

Comments | More in News | Topics: dropouts, ged, igrad

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