Shining a Spotlight on K-12 and Higher Education Alignment

October 25, 2017  — NEW RELEASE: In partnership with the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), National Association of System Heads (NASH), and State Higher Education Executive Officers Association (SHEEO), Higher Ed for Higher Standards released, Shining a Spotlight on K-12 and Higher Education Alignment, the final brief in the Leveraging ESSA series based on a review of alignment strategies in state’s ESSA plans. Forty-eight states and the District of Columbia included at least one of the recommended K-12/ higher education alignment strategies included in Leveraging ESSA ꟷ validating college-ready standards and aligned assessments, vertically aligning K-12 and higher education goals, holding schools accountable for college and career preparation, and supporting student transitions into postsecondary ꟷ with 10 states demonstrating significant alignment by including three or more of the recommended strategies. These states can and should serve as a model for others seeking to build and expand activities to support student transitions from high school into postsecondary. See more from our latest newsletter or download the brief.

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TN Promise Students More Likely to Succeed & Less Likely to Drop Out

September 21, 2017  — Tennessee Promise’s students are showing signs of improvement from previous year56 percent of Tennessee Promise students who entered college in 2015 had graduated, transferred to a four-year university or remained in school two years later, compared to 39 percent of recent high school graduates outside of Tennessee Promise had done the same. Meanwhile, 61 percent of non-Promise students who went from high school to community college in 2015 dropped out within two years, compared to only 44 percent of Tennessee Promise students dropped out in the same time frame. Despite these success, enrollment gaps raise equity questions, since minority students were less likely than white students to participate in Tennessee Promise, with 71 percent of eligible white community college students –  yet only 46 percent of eligible black students and 56 percent of Hispanic students – enrolled in 2015. Tennessee also plans to take steps to target students who are still enrolled and push them to finish, looking at data regarding specific majors course loads and summer enrollment, among other factors. For more information on Tennessee’s effort to improve student success, check out our alignment brief on TN SAILS.


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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.

Remediation at Community Colleges

August 30, 2017  —  Associate’s degrees are increasingly important in connecting students to  to good jobs, but it’s also clear that entering community college unprepared means a much lower chance of actually earning the degree. In an effort to better to understand how community colleges can better support underprepared students, author Timothy Pratt interviews two SUNY Adirondack students in developmental courses to highlight the ways that these courses serve as an unintentional roadblock, and how collaboration with high schools could help to reduce remediation. The more remedial courses a student must take, the less likely they will complete them. Of community college students taking one remedial course, 74 percent complete the class, but for those taking four or more classes, just 25 percent finish all remedial coursework. For more information, read the full article from Education Next, or our report on K-12 and community college 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.

Nationwide Progress Toward Increasing Attainment Goals

June 17, 2017 —  Since 2008, the national attainment rate has risen by 7.9 percentage points. All states still have a long way to go to reach Lumina’s goal that 60 percent of Americans hold degrees, certificates or other high-quality postsecondary credentials by 2025. For more information on your state or metropolitan area’s progress, check out Lumina’s latest report. Higher Ed for Higher Standards also identifies clear strategies for developing aligned K-12 and higher education goals and outlines how states can use those goals to drive strategic actions to support all youth on their path to attain a postsecondary credential of value in our Leveraging ESSA Credential Attainment policy brief.


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.

Reforming Remediation to Support College Completion

March 21, 2017 — A new report College Completion: Focus on the Finish Line from the National Center for Developmental Education calls for closer collaboration between community colleges, public schools, and community services, improved teaching and learning and fully integrated courses and student support services as three main phases of college success. “Focus[ing] on the finish line, not just first hundred meters” means looking beyond just remediation to the full range of supports necessary to support student persistence, and ultimately, completion.


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.

Destination Known: Valuing College and Career Readiness in State Accountability Systems

March 2, 2017 — A new report Destination Known: Valuing College and Career Readiness in State Accountability Systems, urges state K-12 systems to place a greater emphasis on student preparation for and success in postsecondary education when establishing performance goals for high schools. The report, authored by Education Strategy Group and the Council of Chief State School Officers , recommends aligning these goals with state postsecondary attainment goals.  The recommendations are timely because all states are in the process of setting new K-12 accountability benchmarks in response to the federal ESSA requirements. The report is a reminder of how important it is for higher education leaders to inform those decisions.


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.

Seamless Pathways: Bridging Tennessee’s Gap Between High School and Postsecondary

January 26, 2017 — A new report, Seamless Pathways: Bridging Tennessee’s Gap Between High School and Postsecondary, outlines recommendations to “radically change the system so that most [Tennessee] students enter and complete postsecondary education.” Less than one-quarter of high school seniors from the graduating class of 2008 received a postsecondary degree or credential within six years of high school graduation, pointing to a need to accelerate attainment to reach Drive to 55, the state’s postsecondary attainment goal. Based on focus groups from across the state, the report suggests fostering collective responsibility for the postsecondary preparedness among K-12 faculty and staff and ensuring all students have equitable access to course opportunities to increase readiness and success, including TN SAILS. For more information on how TN SAILS can improve preparedness and reduce remediation, check out our alignment brief.


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.

The State of American Jobs

October 6, 2016 —New research from Pew outlines how the shifting economic landscape is reshaping work, society and the way people think about the education, skills and training they need to get ahead. Postsecondary success is critical to workforce success; 65 percent of all new jobs in the United States will require at least some postsecondary education and training by 2020, pointing to the continued importance of higher education to the economic well-being of individuals, families, communities and the nation. But who is responsible for making sure the American workforce has the education and skills they need to succeed? Six-in-ten believe public K-12 schools should have a lot of responsibility, while 28% believe they should bear some responsibility. Among all adults, 52% say colleges should have a lot of responsibility in making sure that the American workforce has the right skills and education to be successful. This shared responsibility is resoundingly clear: K–12 can no longer set long-term system goals in isolation from higher education. Shared goals  creates a north star around which policies and programs across K–12 and postsecondary can be developed and expanded to prepare all students for long-term workforce success. Stay tuned: Higher Ed for Higher Standards will be releasing additional resources related to state postsecondary credentialing goals in fall 2016 as part of Leveraging ESSA.


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

Remediation & the Connection to Postsecondary Outcomes

September 14, 2016 — A new report from the National Center for Educational Statistics examines the impact of remediation course-taking on key postsecondary outcomes, including earning college-level English and math credits and persisting through college for both 2- and 4-year students. Findings from the study, using nationally representative data from student transcripts from 2003 – 2009, suggested “misalignment between high school and college academic standards” and the variable policies on remedial education and placement across states and institutions as some of the obstacles to student success. The report concludes that understanding the barriers students face, can help colleges and universities “better identify struggling students, design strategies to help them overcome their hurdles, and make remedial programs more effective in retaining students and enabling them to progress to college-level curricula and beyond.”


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Supporting Latino Students Critical to Degree Attainment Goals

August 23, 2016 — In order to reach the goals we set around credential attainment, and reap the accompanying economic and social benefits, we must continue to work to close the educational attainment gap, especially between Latinos and their white counterparts, says Deborah Santiago, COO and Vice President for Policy at Excelencia in Education. In the last 20 years, Latino enrollment in higher education has tripled, from 1 to 3.2 million, making them the second largest student population enrolled in higher education today. Meanwhile, Latino attainment of an associate’s degree or higher has nearly doubled, from 12% in 1995 to 23% in 2014. Despite these gains, we must continue to work to increase and accelerate Latino student success to truly achieve educational equity and reach our degree attainment goals. Read the full piece here.


 

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