Debuts High School Dropout Retrieval Plan | Penn Foster

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Penn Foster Debuts Dropout Retrieval Solution at National Dropout Prevention Conference

Program Offers School Districts a High School Completion Program to Improve Graduation Rates

Scranton, PA (November 5, 2013) Penn Foster, a leader in career-focused online and blended education designed to address the skills gap in America, today announced the launch of its Dropout Retrieval Solution, an affordable, accredited high school completion program that enables school districts to tailor an offering to at-risk students or those who have already left the system.

Penn Foster operates this program in 60 schools throughout the U.S., including in Polk County, Fla. Penn Foster’s Chief Learning Officer Ray McNulty, President and COO Joe Gagnon and John Small, who helped launch the Dropout Retrieval Solution program in Polk County, described the program during a presentation today at the National Dropout Conference in Atlanta, Ga. Their presentation outlined the success of the Dropout Retrieval Solution program in Polk County, where Penn Foster worked with more than 20 schools within the district offering diploma completion and credit recovery options. Since the program began in 2007, Penn Foster has helped more than 500 Polk County students graduate with either a Penn Foster High School Diploma or a Polk County High School Diploma.

“As the largest high school in the country with 43,000 students, Penn Foster plans to continue expanding the reach of our Dropout Retrieval Solution, tailoring it to meet the needs of today’s learners,” McNulty said. “The Polk County program with its 82 percent graduation rate is just one example of the success of our blended learning approach, and we look forward to seeing similar success as we roll this program out across the country.”

Using the Dropout Retrieval Solution, students at risk of dropping out, or those who have already dropped out, can engage in a blend of classroom learning and online coursework, allowing them the flexibility they need to complete their high school degree at their own pace. The program also benefits school districts, offering them a low-cost way to improve their graduation rates and keep students enrolled in their schools, while also providing them with increased funding and a new group of educated community members.  The National Dropout Prevention Network Conference provided an ideal opportunity to debut the Dropout Retrieval Solution as the conference brings together school board members, superintendents, counselors, administrators, educators, and other youth practitioners to discuss strategies for improving graduation rates.

“Watching former dropouts - many of whom dropped out multiple times - in Polk County earn their high school diplomas inspired me to spread the word about the benefits of a blended learning approach in secondary education,” said Small. “As the needs of students change, it is important that the education sector changes along with them.  I look forward to watching the continued growth of this flexible education model.”

For more information about Penn Foster’s Dropout Retrieval Solution, please visit

About Penn Foster

Founded in 1890, Penn Foster has been a leader in career-focused distance and blended learning for more than 100 years. Since its inception, more than 13 million people have enrolled in its high school, career school and college to learn advanced skills, further their education and better position them for life success. Today, Penn Foster graduates 25,000 students yearly and enrolls more than 100,000 new students each year in programs designed to address the skills gap in middle skilled careers. Penn Foster's high-quality, affordable distance education allows students the flexibility to complete programs around their schedules with 24/7 access to a supportive online community of students and faculty. For more information, visit www.

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