The Network for College Success (NCS) envisions neighborhood high schools that continuously cultivate collaboration, powerful learning, and a culture of high achievement to prepare all students for college and career success.

NCS uses research to design and facilitate professional learning that builds the capacity of school leaders to help all students attain high levels of academic achievement. Through cross-school learning communities and job-embedded coaching, we support district leaders, principals, teachers, and counselors to:

  • Strengthen school leadership
  • Improve teaching and learning
  • Support freshmen transitioning into high school
  • Prepare students for quality postsecondary options
  • Support culture and climate
  • Integrate research and data into daily practice

See the Focus Areas page for more information!

Krystal Payne on the 'Make Me Care About' Podcast: Why Ninth Grade Matters Most

(May 17, 2023)—In a recent episode of the Gates Foundation's "Make Me Care About" podcast, Krystal Payne, Co-Executive Director at the UChicago Network for College Success (NCS), sheds light on the pivotal role ninth grade plays in shaping a student's educational and career trajectory. With over 25 years of experience in education, Payne emphasizes that success in ninth grade is the most influential indicator of a student's future academic achievements.

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Elevating Student Success: NCS Leads Transformative Sessions at Carnegie Summit for School Improvement

Leaders from the UChicago Network for College Success (NCS) recently attended the Carnegie Summit on Improvement in Education. Hosted in San Diego, this annual conference is a platform for educators, researchers, policymakers, and other stakeholders to share innovative ideas and strategies to drive continuous improvement in schools and districts. 

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Founder and Co-Executive Director to Step Down After 17 Years of Service

The UChicago Network for College Success (NCS) announced that Founder and Co-Executive Director Sarah J. Duncan will be stepping down in June 2023. Sarah has been with NCS for seventeen years, during which she has played a key role in the organization's success in transforming the education landscape of Chicago Public Schools (CPS) as well as the national conversation about educational improvement.

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