The Minneapolis School District is getting $1.2 million from the federal education department to create a mentoring program aimed at American Indian students.
There are 105 American Indian ninth-graders attending Minneapolis district schools this year. The program will pair all of them with a mentor who will work with them through graduation in 2014.
The district's director of Indian education, Danielle Grant, says mentors will do everything from help find tutoring to check in on students if they miss school.
"All mentoring programs are positive things, but a lot of times that's contact once a week or once every two weeks," Grant said. "In this case, you can expect the college prep mentor will be interacting with the student on a close to every-day basis."
Grant says the goal of the program is to increase the graduation rate among American Indians, which is below 50 percent -- the lowest graduation rate of any ethnicity.