What We Are Reading: College and Career Readiness, High School Exit Exams, CTE, NAEP

Looking for new high school-related resources? Here are some pieces that the National High School Center and other organizations have recently released:*

Throwing Money At Education Isn't Working (State Budget Solutions, September 12, 2012). This report provides analysis of the national trends in education from 2009 to 2011, a state-by-state analysis of education spending as a percentage of total state spending, and a comparison of average graduation rates and average ACT scores per state. Analysis of these trends leads to the conclusion that higher spending alone does not guarantee better student performance; contributing factors are discussed.

Closing the Expectations Gap (Achieve, September 13, 2012). Report shows how all states are aligning standards with policies to send clear signals to students about what it means to be academically prepared for college and careers after high school graduation. For the first time, the report also details not only states' policy progress on the college- and career-ready agenda but also their efforts to implement those policies since only faithful implementation can improve student achievement.

The Nation’s Report Card: Writing 2011 (National Center for Education Statistics, September 14, 2012). This report presents results of the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) 2011 writing assessment, the first large-scale computer-based assessment in writing. National results for representative samples of students at grades 8 and 12 are reported as average scale scores and as percentages of students performing at three achievement levels: Basic, Proficient, and Advanced. Additional results are reported based on students’ demographic characteristics, educational experiences, and the frequency of engaging in actions available to them in word-processing software.

State and District Receipt of Recovery Act Funds: A Report from Charting the Progress of Education Reform—An Evaluation of the Recovery Act's Role (National Center for Education Statistics, September 17, 2012). This report uses Department of Education and publicly-available data sources, including Recovery.gov, to examine: (1) how much states and districts received in Recovery Act K–12 education funds and (2) whether and how the distribution of funds varied by key characteristics of the recipient states and districts.

Career and Technical Education: Five Ways That Pay Along the Way to the B.A. (Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, September 18, 2012) This report has two parts. Part One explores in detail the five major CTE pathways at the subbaccalaureate level: employer-based training, industry-based certifications, apprenticeships, postsecondary certificates, and Associate’s degrees. Part Two lists the occupations for which CTE prepares American workers.

State High School Exit Exams: A Policy in Transition (Center on Education Policy, September 19, 2012). CEP’s 11th annual report on state high school exit exams finds that states are embracing higher standards on their exit exams, which means schools and students will feel the impact. The report, based on data collected from state education department personnel in 45 states, discusses the present status of state exit exam policies, the future of these policies as states implement the Common Core State Standards and common assessments, and lessons that can be learned from states’ past experiences with implementing new exit exam policies.

The Spalding Method® (National Center for Education Statistics, September 18, 2012). No studies of The Spalding Method® that fall within the scope of the Adolescent Literacy review protocol meet What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) evidence standards. The lack of studies meeting WWC evidence standards means that, at this time, the WWC is unable to draw any conclusions based on research about the effectiveness or ineffectiveness of The Spalding Method® on adolescent readers. Additional research is needed to determine the effectiveness or ineffectiveness of this intervention.

*Resource descriptions provided by the sponsoring organization

Note: This blog post was originally authored under the auspices of the National High School Center at the American Institutes for Research (AIR). The National High School Center’s blog, High School Matters, which ran until March 2013, provided an objective perspective on the latest research, issues, and events that affected high school improvement. The CCRS Center plans to continue relevant work originally developed under the National High School Center grant. National High School Center blog posts that pertain to CCRS Center issues are included on this website as a resource to our stakeholders.

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