United Way puts focus on educational goals

NORWICH – As part of an effort to reduce the national dropout rate, the Chenango County United Way is examining issues impacting education and plans to work with local educational organizations when it disperses funds in 2012.

The American United Way set a goal of increasing the national graduation rate from 74 to 87 percent by 2018, thereby cutting the national dropout rate in half. Elizabeth Monaco, executive director of the Chenango County United Way, said she is doing whatever possible to contribute.

“It’s an ambitious goal,” said Monaco, “but the role of the United Way in meeting these goals is critical. The needs of our youth are ever increasing.”

According to a Chenango County United Way assessment, area youth grades 3-8 fell behind the upstate average in language arts and math in 2007, but the assessment also found the number of area high school students planning to attend college increased nearly 10 percent in recent years, following a statewide trend of students intending to enroll.

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