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‘Summer Melt’ Keeps Low-Income Students From Enrolling In College

By Dr. Marciene Mattleman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Boston College professor Karen Arnold in investigating graduates of a high school in Providence, RI, found, to her surprise, low-income students who were accepted to college never enrolled.

The students were part of a program called The Met, a network of small high schools with a record of getting low-income grads into college. But, as it turns out, many of the students never registered because they didn’t understand the enrollment paperwork, had money problems, and parents and friends opposed their plans.

Arnold’s revelations led to similar discoveries in other cities where, in the summer, kids who didn’t have counselors and teachers to help them, were torn between staying home and furthering their education, boyfriends and girlfriends, and contributing to family income.

Summer Melt: Supporting Low-Income Students Through the Transition to College, by Benjamin L. Castleman and Lindsay C. Page will be published in October. It is described in The Washington Post as the most incisive book about the college admissions system.

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