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Westwood Seniors Aim High

by Dave Atkins

An article in Westwood Patch yesterday reports an amazing 93.8% of Westwood High School seniors plan to attend a 4-year college. That's based on a survey from 2008 conducted by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (full data available here). I was curious to see what other districts were reporting, so I compiled this table of nearby school districts:

School District percentage of seniors reporting 4-year college plans
Dover-Sherborn 93.9
Westwood 93.8
Wellesley 93.2
Medfield 92.0
Needham 90.5
Sharon 88.5
Holliston 87.5
Brookline 84.9
Newton 82.8
Millis 82.0
Milton 78.2
Walpole 77.7
Canton 73.1
Norwood 69.3
Dedham 68.5


It's great to be at the top of a list like that, but many people are concerned about the crushing debt burden colleges can impose on young people (student loan payments like renting an extra apartment) and counsel students and parents to consider other options. The discussion in the link to the Chronicle of Higher Education article above is worth considering at least for many students who might choose a less traditional path to a happy and successful future.