Downtown College Prep
Downtown College Prep is a growing charter management organization and model for college success for low-income, first-generation students. Currently serving two campuses in grades 6-12, DCP aims to create a replicable model of college readiness and completion that can inform best practices on a national scale. DCP is one of a few organizations, nationwide, that have made a commitment to measuring and reporting college completion for its graduates.
Across America, low-income students complete college at the rate of 9% while their affluent peers graduate at the rate of 77%. Among DCP's first two classes (2004, 2005), 37% complete college within six years while another 20% are still pursuing their university degrees. While our results far exceed national trends, we recognize there exists a substantial gap between college completion for low-income students and their more affluent peers.
Downtown College Prep (DCP) reflects the spirit of innovation and competition that drives Silicon Valley. DCP opened in September 2000 with the goal to prepare underachieving students who will be the first in their family to graduate from college to thrive at four-year universities. DCP was the first charter high school and remains the only college-prep school to explicitly target underperforming students.
Ten years later, DCP operates two campuses in San Jose and serves over 1000 students and alumni. DCP's six-year college completion rate is 4x the national average for low-income students. DCP's comprehensive 6-16 program for first-generation college students is nationally recognized.
DCP's nearly 500 alumni are pursuing their careers and college degrees at schools across California and the United States. DCP's college graduates have earned degrees in mathematics, liberal studies, English, community studies, and engineering. Today our graduates are emerging in their careers as bankers, teachers, scientists, and non-profit community leaders.