Serving Low-Income Children from Norwalk, CT on the Campus of Norwalk Community College

The Challenge

All children deserve the opportunity to succeed. But it’s harder than ever to find a path out of poverty without a college education or technical training.

  • 21% of all American children live below the poverty line, and 44% are low-income. In the 2015-16 Connecticut State Department of Education District Report for Norwalk, CT, 50% of its students were classified as low-income using Free and Reduced Lunch data. This represents 38% of the total number of students in Connecticut which qualify for Free or Reduced priced meals
  • Low-income students are six times more likely to drop out of high school and fewer than one-third of them will enroll in college
  • A 6th grade student who misses more than 20% of class, whose teacher reports poor behavior, or who fails math or English is 70% more likely to drop out
  • The current high school dropout rate is a primary contributor to stagnating U.S. economic mobility and results in over $300 billion in lost wages, taxable income, and health care, welfare, and incarceration costs
  • While states and the nation are trying to produce workers with skills to master new technologies and adapt to the complexities of a global economy, school budgets have become tighter than ever
  • Summer learning loss is a primary cause of the persistent academic achievement gap

Without programs like Horizons, low-income students experience a substantial and cumulative erosion of reading and math skills that can ultimately leave them years behind their peers.