Some good news on the education front.

Officials with Rockford Public Schools have announced it has been named a Ford Next Generation Learning Community. Rockford is now among just 17 communities in the nation to receive the distinction.

The distinction celebrates the high school redesign in the Rockford Public Schools, which began with the rollout of the Academy model in 2010. The next step is working toward becoming a Model Community by 2016, so Rockford can host visitors from other communities hoping to start career academies in their schools.

Ford Next Generation Learning is nationally recognized for its unique approach to meaningful engagement of key community stakeholders to transform existing public high schools into career academies where students learn their academics through the lens of a potential career. At the core of the program is a framework of essential practices that guides a community in development of its master plan.

We talked with RPS 205 superintendent Ehren Jarrett about the honor and what it means for parents and students in the district. Here's the conversation:

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