Colin Powell Addresses High School Drop Out Crisis
NEW YORK — In an effort to bring awareness to the critical issue of the nation’s high school dropout rates in the U.S., General Colin Powell, Founding Chairman of America’s Promise Alliance, and Alma Powell, Chair of America’s Promise Alliance, will jointly appear for a special presentation at NBC News’ “Education Nation” Summit on Tuesday, September 28th. America’s Promise Alliance is the nation’s largest multi-sector partnership organization dedicated to improving the lives of young people. The presentation will address the systemic impact of low graduation rates, and the steps needed to drive policy change, support communities and transform the lives of the country’s most vulnerable students. Following the presentation, Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski of "Morning Joe" will have a discussion with the Powells and take questions from the audience.
"When it comes to education and the future of our children, the time for change is now," said General Colin Powell, USA (Ret.), Founding Chairman, America's Promise Alliance. "The risks of inaction to our economy and the integrity of this country are too great if we do not address the dropout crisis."
"Having access to an education that challenges and inspires our young people to reach higher and give back is one of the most important things we can do as Americans,” said Alma Powell, Chair of America's Promise Alliance. "This job is too big and too important for the schools to tackle alone, so we must all do our part in ensuring the success of our youth. ‘Education Nation’ is a great example of the collaborative effort needed to act on the lessons we've learned and to start making a difference today."
The Powells’ appearance is an integral part of NBC News’ first annual “Education Nation”— fostering an urgently needed national conversation about the state of education in America, giving voice to committed teachers, parents, students and policymakers. Through the "Education Nation" Summit and multi-media programming, NBC News explores the greatest challenges, highlights solutions and examines innovative ideas in education today. Shining a spotlight on the state of education in America, NBC News will hold decision-makers accountable for improving education for America’s future.
Founded in 1997, America's Promise Alliance (the Alliance) is comprised of more than 400 partners across various industry sectors working to help improve the lives of children and youth. In an effort to raise awareness of America’s high school dropout crisis, the Alliance launched itsDropout Prevention Campaign in April 2008. Through this work, the Alliance has sponsored more than 100 Dropout Prevention summits nationwide – bringing together more than 35,000 mayors and governors, business and civic leaders, child advocates, school administrators, students, and parents to develop workable solutions and action plans to raise graduation rates in their communities.
For the next phase of this work, in its most significant campaign to date, the Alliance launched “Grad Nation” in March 2010 with the support of President Barack Obama and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. “Grad Nation” is a ten-year effort to mobilize Americans to end the dropout crisis and prepare young people for success in higher education and the 21st century workforce.
About Education Nation
“Education Nation” is a nationally broadcast in-depth conversation about improving education in America. Through an interactive summit on Rockefeller Plaza parents, teachers and students meet with leaders in politics, education and technology to explore the challenges and opportunities in education today. NBC News will turn Rockefeller Plaza into a “Learning Plaza,” a series of galleries open to the public to explore the latest technologies and techniques used in award-winning classrooms nationwide. The entire week of September 26, all NBC News platforms will highlight education stories, while broadcasting live from the Plaza.
About America’s Promise Alliance
America’s Promise Alliance is the nation’s largest partnership organization dedicated to improving the lives of children and youth. Through the collective power of our partner network, we raise awareness, support communities and engage in nonpartisan advocacy to ensure that young people receive more of the fundamental resources they need to graduate high school prepared for college, work and life. Building on the legacy of our Founding Chairman General Colin Powell, the Alliance believes the success of our young people is grounded in the Five Promises—caring adults; safe places; a healthy start; an effective education; and opportunities to help others.