This series of essays explores the challenges of implementing so many education reforms—such as new Common Core standards, new assessments, new accountability systems, new teacher evaluations, new data systems, and for some states, Race to the Top—all at once, provides a framework for policymakers to think about the choices ahead, as well as strategies and solutions to unexpected conflicts.
In today’s world, earning a high school diploma doesn’t guarantee college readiness. To explore what states are doing to address this critical problem, the Community College Research Center (CCRC) at Columbia’s Teachers College has developed the Reshaping the College Transition project. Two of CCRC’s four planned reports were published in 2013.
This report describes a measure created by Education Sector, the "borrowing to credential ratio", which calculates the total amount of money borrowed by undergraduates at a college divided by the sum of total number of degrees awarded by that college. The borrowing to credential ratio was calculated using data from 2006-07, 2007-08, and 2008-09. Key results include: the ratio has risen sharply in recent years, ratios at for-profits are higher than elsewhere, and there is a wide variation in ratios among states and elite colleges.
This brief presents an approach for state education agency staff to guide state, district and school practitioners in creating coherence among Common Core State Standards, teacher evaluation systems, and job-embedded professional learning to improve instruction in a way that ensures students are college- and career-ready. The brief provides an overview of each of these three reforms and presents the connections between them that support a coherence-buidling process.
This brief focuses on the role that career and technical education (CTE) teachers can play in ensuring college and career readiness (CCR) for all students. The authors introduce who CTE teachers are and how current policies support and integrate them into schools. The authors argue that these teachers are critical to meeting the needs of students who may wish to enter a career without obtaining a 4-year college degree or for those who wish to gain experience in a field before obtaining a higher degree.
This report presents an overview of the higher education landscape and proposes policy reforms that would lead to innovation in the U.S. higher education system. These recommended reforms are built on four principles: focusing on outcome measures; being open to new providers of higher education; unbundling the components of higher education; and allowing for portability. The report also presents emerging innovative approaches to higher education, such as competency-based models, focused institutions, and assessments of prior learning.
This issue brief advocates for the transition from a K-12 system based on seat time (i.e. the Carnegie Unit) to competency-based education. It outlines the rationale behind this change and provides four key suggestions for state policy change.
This report provides an overview of the state of postsecondary career and technical education (CTE) in the United States, including strengths and challenges of the CTE system. It also includes examples of various aspects of CTE systems in other countries and state case studies and recommendations for improving student outcomes of the postsecondary CTE system with a focus on three issues: quality and funding, credentials, and transitions.
This policy brief identifies the essential qualities - or knowledge, skills, and dispositions (KSD) - that educators must cultivate in students to enable them to achieve college and career readiness (CCR). The authors outline the neccesary developments and/or changes at the level of state policy that must be carried out to help students achieve CCR with respect to the identified KSD framework.
This report describes the gap in the alignment between K-12 and higher education learning objectives and outcomes. The authors argue for the coordinated adoption and alignment of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and the Degree Qualifications Profile (DQP) as a solution to this problem.