America’s Promise Alliance launched the GradNation campaign in 2010, building on 105 dropout prevention summits we convened across the country to raise awareness and inspire action. GradNation is now a large and growing movement of dedicated individuals, organizations and communities working together to end America’s dropout crisis.

Current figures put the national on-time high school graduation rate at 80 percent. In response, America’s Promise Alliance has adopted a goal of raising the national average on-time high school graduation rate to 90 percent by 2020, with no school graduating fewer than 80 percent of its students ontime. In addition, GradNation aims to encourage dramatic increases in postsecondary enrollment and graduation.

These goals reflect our commitment to providing the fundamental resources that children and youth need to thrive throughout the full continuum of their development.

This approach to setting young people up for success comes through clearly in the Five Promises: Caring Adults, Safe Places, A Healthy Start, Effective Education, and Opportunities to Make a Difference.


Stats and Goals

Dropout Crisis Facts

First, the good news: the national high school graduation rate is increasing at an accelerated pace, with the current rate standing at 80 percent. However, too many students are leaving high school without obtaining a diploma, which represents a lost opportunity to them and a hit to our economy and communities.

Key Areas of Work

Newly launched, is the primary online destination for users seeking to learn about, connect into and act on behalf of the GradNation campaign. Whether it’s finding information on core topics critical to increasing high school graduation rates, exploring ways to get involved in local efforts, engaging with a robust online community of stakeholders implementing dropout prevention efforts, or sharing stories through text and multimedia, users of will become better equipped to help move the country closer to achieving higher graduation rates.

Building a GradNation Summit

Held annually in Washington, DC, the Building a GradNation Summit is the premier event of GradNation, our campaign to end the high school dropout crisis and prepare young people for college and the 21st century workforce.

GradNation Community Summits

America’s Promise Alliance is working with community partners to convene 100 GradNation Community Summits across the country through 2016. The GradNation Community Summits will hasten the United States’ progress towards reaching the GradNation campaign goals. America’s Promise’s goal for the community summits is to fuel local collaborative action to increase high school graduation rates.

Building a GradNation Report

The annual update of Building a GradNation: Progress and Challenge in Ending the High School Dropout Epidemic was released in February 2013 by the Alliance for Excellent Education, America’s Promise Alliance, Civic Enterprises, and the Everyone Graduates Center at Johns Hopkins University. Each year the report shows that we can end the dropout epidemic.

GradNation Community Guidebook

Our country is making exciting progress towards the GradNation goal of a 90 percent graduation rate by 2020. But we still have a lot of work to do to make every student college and career ready. America’s Promise Alliance has released the updated 2013 GradNation Community Guidebook, a research-based toolkit for communities working to raise graduation rates and better support children and youth from birth through college.