The intent of Pathways to Adult Success (PAS) work is to improve the future for America’s youth through education and thus contribute to a stronger foundation for community life and the American economy.

The PAS initiative is rooted in the long-standing research and community-building mission of the Center for Social Organization of Schools (CSOS), a unit within the Johns Hopkins University (JHU) School of Education, and for many years before that, a unit within JHU’s Krieger School of Arts and Sciences.

CSOS was born in the aftermath of the 1954 Supreme Court decision, Brown vs Board of Education, under the leadership of JHU sociology professor James Coleman. With his team of graduate students (including future CSOS director Jim McPartland), Coleman laid the foundation for JHU’s ground-breaking work illuminating the relationship of race, poverty, and educational attainment, and pragmatic spin-offs into direct services to boost students’ progress in schools and into the future.

Pathways to Adult Success (PAS) is the latest of CSOS’ research and outreach endeavors. With PAS we seek to refine a set of indicators – and the thinking – that help educators figure out which students are likely to need help staying on a path to success, and what help will be most useful to them.

Through PAS, we intend, with your partnership, to identify, refine, and communicate descriptors and processes for indicator and response systems that enable caring adults to intervene at crucial points in young people’s lives to guide and keep them on track toward a bright future as adults.

We invite you to join our work.

Words from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation:

Over the past decade, we’ve seen schools and systems make tremendous progress using indicators, such as Freshman On-Track and the ABCs (attendance, behavior and course-passing/credit accrual, to foster continuous improvement and increase the number of students earning a high school diploma.

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is delighted to support this informal network of practitioners and researchers to take the next steps in building effective indicator and response systems.

In particular, we’re excited about the potential to accelerate the development of new approaches and implementation practices through work together across a new and more formalized national network. And, we hope that this work will enable the field to more quickly learn and develop consensus, leading to more equitable student outcomes and similar increases in students’ post-secondary access, preparation, and success in the coming decade.