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Policy

California Education Policy, Student Data, and the Quest to Improve Student Progress

California Education Policy, Student Data and the Quest to Improve Student Progress examines California’s approach to gathering and sharing data on student progress through the public education system. The four reports in the series look into the perspectives of state and local leaders with regard to the responsibility for gathering and sharing statewide educational data across systems.

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How the EWD Program Aims to Meet Workforce Needs

After the California State Legislature reauthorized EWD in 2012, the CCCCO created a new structure for the program based on seven geographic regions. Each region selected five rapid-growth, high-demand industry/business sectors, and EWD services in each region were targeted to those sectors. This brief outlines perceived strengths and weaknesses of this restructured program and offers recommendations for improvement. The information is drawn from an evaluation of the EWD program, Aiming to Meet Workforce Needs: An Evaluation of the Economic and Workforce Development Program.

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Roles for County Offices of Education to Support College and Career Readiness: Bridging California’s Vision with Local Implementation Needs

This brief focuses on the potential role of County Offices of Education (COEs) in bridging the state’s vision for college and career readiness with the implementation needs of local districts and schools. After summarizing the work of 10 COEs that are known for supporting districts in increasing college and career readiness, the brief raises questions and outlines concerns in this area for COEs across the state.

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Aiming to Meet Workforce Needs: An Evaluation of the Economic and Workforce Development Program

California’s dynamic economy depends on having a large and skilled workforce; consequently, the state must continually support and refine efforts to provide workers with employer-valued competencies. Given the wide range of regional and state needs across this vast state, ensuring that the workforce has the training to keep up with labor market demands is difficult. The California Community Colleges’ (CCC) Economic and Workforce Development Program (EWD) aims to support the development of a workforce that will promote California’s economic development by connecting employers and educators. This report summarizes the findings of an independent evaluation conducted on EWD.

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State Policy Leadership in Higher Education – Six Case Studies

This report provide six mini-case studies of higher education policy reforms enacted in other states, exploring the important role that state policy leadership played in developing, promoting, and implementing these policies aimed at improving higher education outcomes, and discussing the relevance of each reform effort for California. This report follows two reports: an update of California higher education performance, Average Won’t Do, and A New Vision for California Higher Education, an effort to engage stakeholders around a vision more suited to today’s students and economic conditions than the 1960 Master Plan. Together, the reports underscore the urgency of efforts to improve leadership and policy for higher education in California, and offer ideas for how this might be accomplished.

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From Community College to University: Expectations for California’s New Transfer Degrees

This report, written by IHELP for the Public Policy Institute of California, analyzes the progress of the California Community Colleges’ “associate degrees for transfer” that were created as a result of state-enacted legislation in 2010. The degrees are designed to facilitate community college students’ admission to the California State University system and ease completion of a bachelor’s degree. The report finds the reform is leading to the development of clearer transfer pathways for students, although challenges remain, and offers recommendations for improving the implementation effort. Click here for the technical appendix.

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A New Vision for California Higher Education: A Model Public Agenda

This report draws on various reports and other sources of information to construct a model public agenda to address the mounting challenges facing California higher education, intended to inspire broad discussion potentially leading to an official public agenda for California higher education. The model envisions region-based planning and heightened collaboration at the regional level, guided by effective state-level policy leadership and high-level staff support to fulfill critical fiscal, advisory, and accountability roles.

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Social Policy Report: Common Core Development and Substance


This new brief published by the Society for Research in Child Development uses research and literature to provide an overview of the Common Core Standards, including its development and implementation, its relationship to college and career readiness and its effects on educational practice. On pages 16-17 of the brief, Andrea Venezia provided a commentary entitled, “Tracking Common Core Implementation in California,” in which she discusses key challenges of implementation for grades 9-14 and provides an overview of some of California’s work in this area.


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Career Opportunities: Career Technical Education and the College Completion Agenda – Part IV: Aligning Policy with Mission for Better Outcomes

This report is the culmination of a four-part series on career technical education in the California Community Colleges. Based on a comprehensive analysis of potential barriers to more effective CTE, the report offers a set of suggestions for policy changes intended as a resource for the community college system as it continues to work to improve student success.

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Career Opportunities: Career Technical Education and the College Completion Agenda – Part III: Promising CTE Policies from Across the States

This report is the third in the four-part series on career technical education in the California Community Colleges. It examines policies in other states that might offer helpful lessons for shaping CTE in California to better meet student and employer needs. It provides examples in the following five policy areas: degree and certificate programs offered; curriculum structure and delivery; high school – community college – workplace pathways; financing CTE – college and student costs; and accountability.

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Taking the Next Step: The Promise of Intermediate Measures for Meeting Postsecondary Completion Goals

This report, sponsored by Jobs for the Future, examines system, state and multi-state efforts and multi-institution initiatives to develop and use intermediate measures of student success as a tool to improve accountability and guide institutional efforts to improve student success. The report distinguishes between milestones that must be attained in order to get to completion and success indicators that increase a student’s chances of completion. The report analyzes the differences in approach, definitions and uses of the data on intermediate measures and offers recommendations on the collection, reporting and effective use of the data and the need for common practices and definitions.

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