NEW: Leaders Convene for Education Summit to Address the Latino Education Gap
Thursday, October 25, 2012
More than 50 leaders from throughout the state will gather today and tomorrow for the Rhode Island Education Summit at the State House. The event was convened by Senator Juan Pichardo in collaboration with the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) and the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) Educational Fund. It aims to provide policymakers, educators, and other key stakeholders with information to consider when examining the state of education in Rhode Island in a way that will support its growing diverse urban population and to develop a work force that will aid in its economic development. As the second largest and one of the fastest growing population groups in the nation, Latinos play a vital role in the strength of the Rhode Island economy.
“Rhode Island’s economic competitiveness depends on providing quality education to all our students,” said Senator Pichardo. “Right now, Latino students are being left behind. By 2016, 61 percent of jobs in Rhode Island will require a college education. We must ensure that all our students are college and career ready upon graduating high school and have access to and complete post-secondary education so that our state and country do not fall behind.”
This conversation comes at an important time for the state of Rhode Island. Census data from 2010 demonstrate a 44 percent growth in the Latino population in our state since 2000. Currently, about 19 percent of the state’s K-12 students are Latino, and in the Providence School District 63 percent of all students are Latino.
Recognizing the importance of improving educational success for Latino students, Senator Pichardo, in partnership with leading state and local organizations, is working to continue addressing the opportunity gap that exists. During the Summit, policy makers and participants will meet with experts to discuss a wide range of topics, including college completion, career readiness and Common Core Standards.
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