Completion agenda takes off in 2014

Complete College America thinks 2014 will be a “tipping point” for the completion agenda. Twenty-six states are implementing performance funding; 22 states (and the District of Columbia) are trying to accelerate remedial education. In addition, 15 states are deploying “15 to Finish” campaigns and 11 are developing plans for either structured schedules or Guided Pathways to Success.

 The Game Changers report identifies “the five best college completion strategies.”

At the White House summit on expanding college opportunity, 23 Alliance of States members committed to ensuring more remedial education students succeed in gateway math and English courses, writes Bruce Vandal. These “are STATE commitments that have the potential to impact hundreds of thousands of students enrolled at all of the participating states’ public institutions.”

In 2009, President Obama pledged the U.S. would lead the world in college graduates. Much has been learned since then, writes Vandal.

We did not understand that only a fraction of the 50% of all college students who are placed into remedial education each year make it to a college level gateway course, much less pass that course and proceed to a postsecondary credential. Second, in 2009, states and institutions had little idea how to increase success rates in gateway college courses . . .

In 2014, research has shown “corequisite” remediation — placing most students in gateway courses with academic support — can increase success rates dramatically, writes Vandal.

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[…] Twenty-six states now link college funding to student outcomes or are planning to do so, reports Complete College America. Twenty-two states are accelerating college remediation or placing students in “gateway” courses with added support. College graduation rates will start to rise in 2014, the group predicts. […]

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