Southwest Open School is an extraordinary charter school operating out of Cortez, Colorado. Targeting at-risk high-school age youth, Southwest Open School stands out because of its unique approach and impressive results. Oftentimes, students come to Southwest Open School as a last-resort, having left or been expelled from their previous institutions due to behavior problems, lack of engagement, or external issues above and beyond the scope of a typical high school student. Southwest Open School transforms lives and re-writes futures through a nurturing program focused on character development, respect, and experiential education. Reportedly, 90.3% of graduates from Southwest Open School go on to secure a job or continue on to higher education within three years of graduating. These numbers are significant given that only 24% of Cortez residents over 25 years old hold a bachelor’s degree, 8% hold a graduate or professional degree, while 12% of the population are unemployed. Fellows in the Southwest Region had the privilege of conducting a Community Impact Visit at the Southwest Open School in August to learn more about the school and evaluate a regional grant from the Southwest Regional Council to support the SWOSology program.
Archive for the ‘Regional News’ Category
As part of El Pomar’s Regional Partnerships Program, we gather information to learn about the issues and opportunities in communities across the state. Our 11 regional councils provide a wealth of information, networks and relationships to guide our work and inform El Pomar about how to better serve all of Colorado. (more…)
In July, El Pomar’s Northwest Regional Council convened for the third time in 2013. Nine months after making a multi-year funding commitment to a more effective three-phase pipeline program to guide middle school students to higher education, the Northwest Council has found itself not only celebrating accomplishments, but also facing new opportunities for growth. (more…)