Dictionary.com defines impact, in part, as the “force exerted by a new idea, concept, technology, or ideology.” When we at the Foundation talk about IMPACT, we mean that our programs must have a measurable positive impact on student achievement. All of our programs must show a direct line to improved academic performance. The District should settle for nothing less than a 100% high school graduation rate. However, in the 21st century, simply graduating from high school is no longer a ticket to the middle-class. The District must graduate its 12th-graders ready for success at a four-year college, an advanced technical training program, an apprenticeship, or a career in the military. The days of going from high school to a middle-class life are over. We should adapt our education and job training systems to reflect this reality. As mentioned in our mission statement, DCPS/Charter school graduates must be able to think critically, solve problems, express themselves verbally and in writing, and collaborate as part of a team. These are the characteristics employers require for almost all living-wage jobs in the District of Columbia.