A New Era for Community Colleges

December 20, 2016 — Eloy Ortiz Oakley, Chancellor of California Community Colleges and Regent of the University of California, wrote a new blog post for Huffington Post on the importance of community colleges in ensuring opportunity for all Americans. “An educated workforce is no longer a luxury but an economic imperative,” says Oakley, also a member of Higher Ed for Higher Standards Advisory Council, citing the additional $570,000 college grads earn over the course of their careers compared to high school graduates.  For more ideas on how the 1,600 community colleges, that “occupy the best position to impact all Americans,” can do more to support students in the coming year, check out our resources on higher ed and K-12 collaborations through ESSA, or read more on our partnership with the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) and Association of Community College Trustees. 


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Additional Resources from Higher Ed for Higher Standards

The Leveraging ESSA series to provides several resources to support higher ed and K-12 collaboration in state ESSA plans.

Aligning Expectations
The Aligning Expectations toolkit helps higher education leaders get involved in states’ reviews of  standards and/or assessments.

Alignment Policy Brief
The Alignment Policy Brief Series is designed to elevate best practices and inform higher ed leaders of emerging collaborations with K-12.

Seizing the Moment
The Seizing the Moment report on community college alignment shows how collaboration with K–12 can better support students.

Early Success in Scaling CUNY’s ASAP Program

December 1, 2016 —  City University of New York (CUNY) launched an innovative program of wrap-around support services and incentives, called Accelerated Study in Associate Programs (ASAP) in 2007. ASAP doubled the three-year graduation rate of students seeking an associates’ degree (from 22 percent to 40 percent), while also increasing the share of students who transferred to four-year colleges to seek a BA (from 17 percent to 25 percent). Despite increased annual costs per enrolled student (by about $5,400), ASAP  reduced the total cost of producing each additional graduate overall. Brookings explores the early evidence from Ohio suggesting that the ASAP approach can be replicated in a different setting, with a different population, even in a “system with decentralized governance and with a population of non-traditional students” For more on ASAP or other redesigned first year experiences, check out our report on community college and K-12 collaboration, Seizing the Moment.


Sign up to receive the Higher Ed for Higher Standards monthly e-newsletter or view our previous newsletters here.

Additional Resources from Higher Ed for Higher Standards

The Leveraging ESSA series to provides several resources to support higher ed and K-12 collaboration in state ESSA plans.

Aligning Expectations
The Aligning Expectations toolkit helps higher education leaders get involved in states’ reviews of  standards and/or assessments.

Alignment Policy Brief
The Alignment Policy Brief Series is designed to elevate best practices and inform higher ed leaders of emerging collaborations with K-12.

Seizing the Moment
The Seizing the Moment report on community college alignment shows how collaboration with K–12 can better support students.

PA Community College Partners with K-12 District to Create Math Transition Course

November 21, 2016 — Northampton Community College (NCC) is partnering with Bethlehem Area School District (BASD) to design a math course aimed at ensuring district graduates don’t need college remedial math courses. Currently, about 80 percent of NCC students that take the placement tests end up in remedial, non-creditbearing math courses. Since 30 percent of Bethlehem Area School Districts graduates enroll there, this course – co-taught by NCC and BASD faculty – this collaboration is the start of a strong educational pipeline fron K-12 to postsecondary. Read more from Lehigh Valley Live, and for more on placement policies and transition courses, check out our report on community college and K-12 collaboration, Seizing the Moment, as well as our Alignment Policy Brief series.


Sign up to receive the Higher Ed for Higher Standards monthly e-newsletter or view our previous newsletters here.

Additional Resources from Higher Ed for Higher Standards

The Leveraging ESSA series to provides several resources to support higher ed and K-12 collaboration in state ESSA plans.

Aligning Expectations
The Aligning Expectations toolkit helps higher education leaders get involved in states’ reviews of  standards and/or assessments.

Alignment Policy Brief
The Alignment Policy Brief Series is designed to elevate best practices and inform higher ed leaders of emerging collaborations with K-12.

Seizing the Moment
The Seizing the Moment report on community college alignment shows how collaboration with K–12 can better support students.

Stuck at Square One: College Students Increasingly Caught in Remedial Education Trap

August 26, 2016 — Listen or read this compelling piece that discusses the history and current context of the issue of remediation, while also focusing  in on several students’ stories as examples.


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What Does it Take to Get Students Ready for College?

August 18, 2016 — Collaboration with local high schools is key, according to Community College Research Center’s Elisabeth Barnett and Elizabeth Ganga’s opinion piece in The Hechinger Report. Transition courses designed to fill in gaps in students’ high school education and to get them ready for college were in place in 29 states as of late 2012, but new research from CCRC outlines ways to maximize their effectiveness, including an overview outlining the state of knowledge about the courses  as well as a report on implementation in California, Tennessee, New York, and West Virginia earlier this year. Without an agreement with  higher ed that the transition courses satisfy remediation requirements, students may still have to take a placement test when they get to college; meanwhile, a lack of feedback on how transition course students fare in college leaves K-12 unsure of whether the courses are effective or need improvement — underscoring the need for collaboration with K-12 and higher ed.


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Illinois Community College Board Announces Lowered Remediation Rates

July 28, 2016 — Diverse Education reports that “between 2011 and 2015, the state has seen a 24-percent reduction in the number of community college students enrolling in developmental education,” according to officials from the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB). The third largest system in the nation credits its successes — despite severe budget issues — to both system-wide and college-specific initiatives around co-requisite remediation and greater collaboration with local high schools. Read more from Diverse Education here, and for more on community colleges collaborating with K-12 to reduce remediation, see our report, Seizing the Moment.


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Oregon’s Public University and Community College Placement Policy Starts this Fall

July 26, 2016 — Oregon students will be able to use high school test scores to prove they are ready for college-level courses for the first time this fall. Last year, leaders of the state’s public universities and community colleges agreed to waive placement tests for students who scored 3 or 4 on the Smarter Balanced test in English language arts and math in order to help bridge the gap between high school and higher education. Read more from the Bend Bulletin, or learn about how leveraging rigorous high school assessments can support your intuition’s student success agenda from the first issue of our alignment policy brief series.


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Cal State Students Get On Track at Rio Hondo College First

July 20, 2016 —  A two-year, $2-million grant to the Rio Hondo community college district — one of five totaling $10 million awarded by the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office — provides resources for Rio Hondo to work with area high schools, adult schools and CSU Los Angeles (CSU LA) to improve the chances of success for students with challenges in English and math through a trio of interventions, including a summer bridge program, winter math booster, and a supplemental peer tutoring system. In addition to offering classes and support services, Rio Hondo also will work with area high schools and adult schools to ensure that curriculum aligns effectively with from K-12, to community college and the university system through CSU LA. Read more from CCDaily, and for more on community colleges collaborating with K-12, see our report, Seizing the Moment.


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When College Students Start Behind

June 2, 2016 — A new report from The Century Foundation describes findings from multiple studies on four types of reforms under way at various colleges, and concludes with the view that “a wholesale redesign of the student experience at community colleges is needed to make a real difference in the outcomes of underprepared students”. Higher Ed for Higher Standards offers more information on what higher ed can do address to student readiness in terms of pre-college interventions, placement policies, and redesigned first year experiences, in our report, Seizing the Moment: Community Colleges Collaborating to Improve Student Success.


 

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Tennessees Shows Four Year Drop in Need for Remediation

May 31, 2016 — Newly released data from Tennessee shows a four-year drop in the percentage of first-time freshmen who arrived at college in need of remedial classes, from 76.8% in 2011 to 63.3% in 2015. Remedial math rates were lower too: 77.1% in 2011 down to 55.3% in 2015. An article from the Tennessean,  featuring more information from Governor Haslam’s staff, connects the drop in the need for remediation to the success of the SAILS program, a statewide program that offers self-paced remedial coursework in high school, through a collaboration with the local com unity colleges. Offering precollege interventions like SAILS, is an important way higher education can improve student readiness; learn more about the SAILS program in our report, Seizing the Moment: Community Colleges Collaborating to Improve Student Success.


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