First White House Summit

At First White House Summit on Next-Generation High Schools, Penn Foster President Frank Britt Urges "Changing the Equation of Work and School"

November 13, 2015

School pledges $1 million in educational support to employer-funded high-school completion programs for Opportunity Youth.

WASHINGTON, D.C., November 13, 2015 — Frank Britt, President of Penn Foster, a career-focused blended learning provider, participated this week in the first-ever White House Summit on Next Generation High Schools, where he and other education leaders bolstered the White House’s efforts to catalyze change in educational paradigms and incite new opportunities for personalized, project-based, and blended learning.

Attended by a broad range of constituents dedicated to educational reform, the event recognized students, educators, philanthropists, and entrepreneurs who are empowering students to succeed starting at the high school level through multi-tiered systems of support.

"At Penn Foster, we have created a way for those who have aged out of most traditional high school programs to achieve their high school degree and regain control of their future. This year alone, we are on track to graduate over 25,000 high school students," said Britt. “This results in a changing of the equation for work and school for young people who are looking to prepare themselves for the workforce, and expands the supply of credentialed talent to Fortune 1000 employers."

Sharing The White House's vision for reform, Penn Foster is creating a next-generation high school-to-career pathway designed for Opportunity Youth, or "disconnected youth" who are neither in school nor working. The hallmark of this approach is customizing a learning environment that works for young adults and includes a self-directed instructional design model, a mobile-first student user experience and a competency-based curriculum aimed at preparing graduates for the workforce. Underscoring its commitment to changing the equation, Penn Foster has pledged $1 million in educational support to leading companies who will begin to initiate employer-funded high-school completion programs for groups of students who are underrepresented in high-growth occupations.

President Barack Obama challenged the current system of high school education earlier this year in his State of the Union speech, calling for a national effort to create more Next Generation High Schools – schools that incorporate key elements of redesign including personalized learning, work-based learning experiences, and deeper ties to post-secondary education. Yesterday’s White House Summit was another building block in this effort.

"It was an honor to join this esteemed group in exploring ways to teach the way that students learn,” said Britt. "The discussion reinforced for me that all students deserve a personalized learning experience."

Click here to learn more about the White House Initiative on Next Generation High Schools visit.

About Penn Foster
Founded in 1890, Penn Foster is a leader in career-focused online and blended learning, offering high school, career, and college programs designed to create pathways to employment, and career advancement. Since our inception, more than 13 million people have enrolled across our three schools to help further their education and learn practical career skills to better position them for life success. Through direct enrollment as well as strategic partnerships with schools, employers and youth organizations, we enroll more than 100,000 new students each year and graduate 30,000 annually. For more information, visit


The Close It Summit 2017

Join Penn Foster and hundreds of leaders in learning, recruitment, and workforce development for the 2017 Close It Summit to highlight and discuss competency-based education, training, and hiring. We’re excited to be part of two events at this year’s conference:

Penn Foster + Chicago CRED High School Graduation
Wednesday, September 27th at 11:00AM
Join Penn Foster and the Honorable Arne Duncan in celebrating the graduation of Chicago CRED participants from Penn Foster High School.

Workshop: “Why Now? A Case for Change”
Wednesday, September 27th at 3:00PM
Penn Foster CEO Frank Britt joins thought leaders to discuss how industry must change to meet the needs of the millennial worker and why addressing the skills gap now is imperative.



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