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Monday, April 30, 2018
New Orleans Student Gets 80 College Acceptances
While early Spring can be an excruciating time for college hopefuls, it can be a season of triumph. No one understands this better than Darrin Francois, a high school senior at the International School of New Orleans (ISNO). Francois applied to over one hundred colleges. So far, he has received 83 acceptances, and been offered close to $3 million in scholarships.
Francois owes his success to perseverance, hard work and optimism. He earned a 4.24 GPA, was a National Honor Society President and has already taken a number of college courses. He claims to be using his spare time to visit potential colleges and says he is looking for a school with a diverse student body and strong criminal justice program. Francois hopes to become a judge.
ISNO is an open-enrollment charter school in New Orleans, with 565 students. It claims to be the only school in the city to offer an International Baccalaureate Diploma Program (IBDP). The school reports that at least a dozen other students have each received twenty or more college acceptance letters.
Open-admission is a big deal. It means that students seeking to attend need not test in. Schools with frontloaded filters tend to concentrate students from privileged backgrounds. ISNO is able to offer its students many of the advantages of private school education-things like smaller class sizes, better student-teacher ratios, and more stringent oversight from guidance counselors during the college application process.
The International Baccalaureate is an educational program created in Switzerland in the 1960s. It has grown in popularity and now offered in close to 2,000 schools worldwide. IBDP programs require students to learn a foreign language, and typically include interdisciplinary instruction. Though access was historically skewed to private institutions, more than 90% of the IBDP programs in the U.S. are available at public schools.
Francois has until May 1st to make his decision.
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