The future of our nation is inextricably linked to the future of the Hispanic community – Hispanics are the largest and fastest‐growing minority group, and will represent 60 percent of our nation’s population growth between 2005 and 2050. However, Hispanics have the lowest education attainment levels of any group in the United States.
Who We Are
The White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics (Initiative) was originally established by President George H.W. Bush in 1990 to address the educational disparities faced by the Hispanic community. Since then, the call to address these within the Hispanic community has been recognized by Presidents William J. Clinton and George W. Bush and more recently by President Barack Obama through the renewal of the Initiative.
On Oct. 19, 2010, President Obama signed Executive Order 13555, renewing the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics. This commitment demonstrated the President’s strong support for the critical role Hispanics play in the overall prosperity of the nation and highlights the administration’s commitment to expanding educational opportunities and improving educational outcomes for all students.
What We Do
Today, through public‐private partnerships and in concert with the President’s Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanics (Commission), the Initiative advances a strategic policy and outreach agenda to tackle critical education challenges:
- Improving availability of and access to high quality early learning programs for Hispanic children;
- Dramatically increasing the number of Hispanic high school graduates;
- Ensuring more Hispanics students enroll in and more importantly, complete college.
All of this is focused on getting students college and career ready for the jobs of the 21st‐century and to guarantee they can compete globally, restoring the United States to being first in the world in terms of proportion of college graduates.
The Initiative works directly with stakeholders, linking together key individuals and organizations from across the country to increase awareness of educational inequalities that persist and communicate and share programs and resources available to the community. Initiative staff work alongside the Commission and a national network of community leaders to provide real‐time input and advice on the development, implementation, and coordination of education policy and programs that impact the Hispanic community. A key priority for the Initiative is the coordination of the Federal Interagency Working Group (Working Group) on Educational Excellence for Hispanics, consisting of senior officials from the White House and other Federal Agencies to focus on different aspects of the educational system or challenges facing Hispanics. The Working Group’s collective efforts aim to increase the participation of the Hispanic community and Hispanic‐Serving Institutions (HSIs) in the Department’s programs and other education activities.
The Initiative’s objectives are to increase educational opportunities, improve educational outcomes, and deliver a complete and competitive education for all Hispanics. The Initiative promotes, engages, encourages, and undertakes efforts designed to meet these objectives by:
- Increasing awareness of the educational challenges faced by Hispanic students;
- Increasing the percentage of Hispanic children who enter kindergarten ready for success by improving access to high‐quality programs and services that encourage the early learning and development of children from birth through age 5;
- Implementing successful and innovative education reform strategies in America’s public schools to ensure that Hispanics students receive a rigorous and well‐rounded education and have access to student support services that will prepare them for college, a career, and civic participation;
- Ensuring access to excellent teachers and school leaders, in part by supporting efforts to improve the recruitment, preparation, development, and retention of successful Hispanic teachers and school leaders responsible for the education of Hispanic students;
- Reducing the dropout rate of Hispanic students and helping Hispanic students graduate from high school prepared for college and a career;
- Increasing college access and success for Hispanic students and providing support to help ensure that a greater percentage of Hispanics complete college and contribute to the goal of having America again lead the world in the proportion of college graduates by 2020; and
- Enhancing the educational and life opportunities of Hispanics by fostering positive family and community engagement, improving the quality of, and expanding access to, adult education, literacy, and career and technical education, as well as increasing opportunities for education and career advancement in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.