Graduation Walk Reaches Out to Students

Destination Graduation

Des Moines Public Schools administrators, educators, school board members, and community partners continue to work together to keep students in school and on track to graduate.

In October 2010, the district was awarded $6 million in grants from the U.S. Department of Education to reform high schools and improve the educational outcomes of students. The school district will receive $1.2 million each year for the next five years to support Destination Graduation — the district’s initiative to see fewer students drop out of school and more students graduate. The five-year goal for DMPS is to raise the graduation rate to 95 percent and lower the dropout rate to below state average.

Graduation Walk 2013

Des Moines Public Schools collaborates with United Way of Central Iowa  and corporate sponsor Wells Fargo to hold the Graduation Walk (formerly Reach Out to Dropouts) in Des Moines every September, a school and community effort to re-enroll students in school. This year’s event is on Saturday, September 21.

We need your help to make this event a success. As avolunteer, your participation will be meaningful to our central Iowa community. You’ll be part of a team of 3-4 community volunteers and school administrators who will go to the homes of youth who have not returned to high school in the fall, connecting with the youth and family and providing an opportunity to re-enroll.

When a young person does not graduate high school, it’s an issue for all of us. Consider:

  • Dropouts stand to earn, on average, $648,000 less over their lifetimes compared to their peers who graduate.
  • People who drop out of high school are four times more likely to be unemployed, five times more likely to become incarcerated, and six times more likely to become teen parents.
  • Adding the loss of income and the human service costs, every dropout represents a million dollar problem.

If you would like to volunteer, simply visit the United Way of Central Iowa to register.

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