State College and Career Readiness Initiative: Final Progress Reports

This report provides a final progress update on the work the Southern Regional Education Board and its partner states completed on Strengthening Statewide College/Career Readiness Initiative (SSCRI), a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation funded grant project that began early in 2008 and ended in April 2011The project focused on strengthening the college- and career-readiness initiatives in six states: Florida, Kentucky, Maryland, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.

Beyond the Rhetoric: Improving College Readiness Through Coherent State Policy

This brief identifies key issues associated with the college readiness gap and causes of this gap, as well as outlines steps state policymakers and educators can take close the college readiness gap in their states. In order to ensure students are prepared for postsecondary success, a statewide college readiness agenda should be in place. Components of this college readiness agenda include: readiness standards, assessments, curriculum, teacher development, college placement, and state accountability. 

Essential Elements of State Policy for College Completion: Transitional Courses for College and Career Readiness

This brief provides policymakers with elements to consider when developing state policies around implementing high school transitional courses aimed at improving college completion rates. The brief includes questions for consideration, examples of existing state policies and actions, and recommendations for effective policies for transitional courses. 

Orientation to Self and Career: Constructivist Theory and Practice in the Classroom

This report describes a constructivist career course, "Orientation to Self and Career," aimed at helping students meet the demands of the world of work. The report also explores the theoretical foundations, modules, activities, and outcomes of the course. Outcomes of the course include increases in students' career decision self-efficacy and decreases in students' self-defeating thoughts.

The Early Academic Outreach Program (EAOP) and Its Impact on High School Students’ Completion of the University of California’s Preparatory Coursework

This report describes the effects that Project Graduation Really Achieves Dreams (GRAD) had on academic progress in select high schools in three states. Findings indicated that Project GRAD had a statistically significant positive impact on the number of students completing core academic curriculum in one site, some sites did not show an improvement in student academic preparation, and there were improvements made in attendance and promotion to 10th grade in some sites.

Common Core State Standards & Career and Technical Education: Bridging the Divide

This report provides state education leaders with information on how to align academics and career & technical education (CTE) through implementation of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). This report describes what states are doing to align CTE and CCSS, highlights strategies, and identifies common challenges and barriers to alignment.

Promising Practices and Considerations for Districts in Competency-Based Education Webinar Questions: Part 1 – Data Systems and Curriculum and Instruction Resources

On July 16, the College and Career Readiness and Success Center at the American Institutes for Research and the American Youth Policy Forum co-hosted a webinar, “Promising Practices and Considerations for Districts in Competency-Based Education.” A brief summary of the webinar is available here.

Project Lead the Way Works: A New Type of Career and Technical Program

This report compared the outcomes of Project Lead the Way (PLTW) relative to the High Schools That Work (HSTW) program.  The majority of study participants were white males who had parents that pursued post-secondary education. PLTW students had higher scores in math and science on the NAEP-referenced HSTW Assessment than similar HSTW career/technical students in comparable career/technical fields and all fields.


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