The State of our GradNation: What will it take to get to a 90 percent grad rate for all students?

Over the last decade, 2.8 million more students have graduated from high school rather than dropping out, with significant benefits for them, our economy and our nation. The current national graduation rate is at an all-time high of 83.2 percent. However, the nation is still off-pace to reach a 90 percent graduation rate goal by 2020, and some even wonder if the progress being made is real.

What challenges are ahead in order to reach the 2020 goal? How do we address the skeptics? What are the promising practices and evidence that will help our nation achieve its commitment to equitable access to a quality education for all?

Caps BGN
Thursday, May 3, 2017 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM EDT

The Aspen Institute
Washington, DC

Caps BGN

The Aspen Institute and the convening partners of the GradNation campaign – America’s Promise Alliance, Alliance for Excellent Education, Civic Enterprises, and the Everyone Graduates Center at Johns Hopkins - invite you to attend an event to learn more about the current state of high school graduation in our country.

The event will showcase the release of the 2017 Building a Grad Nation Report by Civic Enterprises and The Everyone Graduates Center, followed by a moderated panel conversation to address the key challenges associated with raising graduation rates, featuring voices from leaders on the ground and researchers in the field.

Speakers will include:

  • Elliot Gerson, Executive Vice President, Aspen Institute
  • Nicole Anderson, AVP of Social Innovation and President of the AT&T Foundation
  • John Bridgeland, President and CEO, Civic Enterprises
  • Bob Balfanz, Director, Everyone Graduates Center at Johns Hopkins University
  • Gov. Bob Wise, President, The Alliance for Excellent Education
  • John Gomperts, President and CEO, America’s Promise Alliance
  • Lisa Stark, Contributor, Education Week, PBS Newshour
  • Charlene Briner, Deputy Commissioner, Minnesota Department of Education
  • Jennifer DePaoli, Senior Research and Policy Advisor, Civic Enterprises
  • Anthony Terrell, Principal, Mt. Vernon High School, Fairfax, VA


Event will be livestreamed. Register for livestream option via link below to be sure you receive the livestream details.


Join the livestream below on May 3, 2017 at 3:00pm (est)

About the Building a Grad Nation Report
The 2017 Building a Grad Nation Report is co-authored by Civic Enterprises and Everyone Graduates Center, and released in partnership with America’s Promise Alliance and the Alliance for Excellent Education. GradNation is a large and growing movement of dedicated individuals, community leaders, businesses and organizations working together to increase the on-time high school graduation rate to 90 percent by 2020 and prepare young people for postsecondary enrollment and the workforce. The campaign is fueled by a belief that all children can thrive if they are provided with Five Promises: caring adults, safe places, a healthy start, effective education and opportunities to serve.

The GradNation Campaign is led by

America's Promise Alliance
Everyone Graduates Center
Alliance for Excellent Education

Event Host

The Aspen Institute