A paper released by the National Bureau of Economics Research and conducted by the University of Chicago Crime Lab, a MacArthur grantee, suggests a promising approach for helping the most challenged students, who often arrive in high school several years behind their peers. The Lab provided a Chicago-based program consisting of intense tutoring, in combination with group behavioral counseling, to a group of low-income ninth- and 10th-grade African American youths with weak math skills, track records of absences, or disciplinary problems. Those students learned in an eight-month period the equivalent of what the average American high school student learns in math over three years of school, as measured by standardized test scores. In addition, far more of the students in the program met indicators of being on track to graduate from high school on time than their peers who were not given tutoring or counseling.
Community & Economic Development
Helping to increase social and economic opportunities for low-income Chicagoans, MacArthur supports the New Communities Program, a comprehensive community revitalization effort in 16 Chicago neighborhoods, as well as communication of its lessons learned to other cities and the field.