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Tipsheet

Awesome: Inner-City All Boys School Sends Every Graduate to College

Verbum Dei, an all-boys Jesuit school in Watts, Los Angeles, had every member of the senior class accepted to college for the seventh straight year. The school is a member of the Cristo Rey Network, which seeks to provide educational opportunities for low-income students through a unique work-study program. Students do not have to be Catholic to attend Verbum Dei. Verbum Dei's 70 graduates are headed to some of the nation's finest schools--UCLA, Georgetown, Berkeley--which the students themselves admit was once thought impossible.

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The majority of Verbum Dei's students entered high school about a year or two behind in academic standards. They essentially did six years of school in a four-year period.

The success of Verbum Dei (and the Cristo Rey Network as a whole) of giving a world-class education to economically disadvantaged students should be lauded. It's absolutely incredible that a school is able to transform someone from a self-described "delinquent" into a university student in just four years. School choice and educational options are key to helping a community thrive.

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