Can you hear me now?

Apparently AT&T has answered the call of reducing the high school drop out rate of American Students.

The telecommunications giant and America’s Promise Alliance (the Alliance) recently announced a $1 million contribution to fund a re-granting initiative led by the Alliance that will provide young people nationwide with the opportunity to develop and implement their own program ideas for increasing graduation rates.

The AT&T contribution is one of the first major gifts to support Grad Nation, the next phase of the Alliance’s Dropout Prevention Campaign. A 10-year initiative, Grad Nation is focused on mobilizing Americans to end the dropout crisis.   This work will pay special attention to areas of the country where the need is the greatest, especially communities surrounding the nation’s 2,000 lowest-performing high schools, which account for approximately 50 percent of all young people who drop out of school.

In turn, the Alliance will use AT&T’s $1 million contribution to create a grants program entitled “My Idea,” to empower youth in their communities to lead the local effort and generate new and innovative activities to increase graduation rates and workforce readiness among their peers. Youth participating in the program will be paired with skilled Alliance partners to carry out the initiative.

The “My Idea” program will provide grants delivered in two different ways to ensure youth across the country have the opportunity to apply.  Local grants ranging from $500 to $1,500 will be available to youth in targeted schools and neighborhoods in 10 Alliance-identified communities with higher dropout rates. National grants of up to $20,000 will be open to youth in all 50 states to fund community-wide projects. All applicants will be encouraged to develop projects focusing on improving known indicators that influence graduation rates, such as 8th grade math and science scores, or on-time promotion from 9th to 10th grade.

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