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May 2011
What's Happening

New California Performance Report – IHELP is gearing up for the release of their newest report on California higher education performance. As in the previous “Grades Are In” reports, it will focus on the areas of preparation, participation, completion, affordability, benefits, and finance and will rate California's overall performance with respect to other states, and by region and race/ethnicity within California. The report should be available by the end of June.

New Project on Developmental Education – IHELP is serving as a strategic advisor on a project for BTW Informing Change and Jobs for the Future aimed at learning about effective institutional and state policies and practices related to developmental education. The project involves case studies of three high-performing community colleges in Florida, with IHELP advising on the analyses and the development of a policy research brief summarizing the results and their implications.

IHELP Attends Launch of Education Institute – IHELP Research Specialist Colleen Moore attended the launch of the Institute for Evidence-Based Change in San Diego on May 18. IEBC grew out of the California Partnership for Achieving Student Success (Cal-PASS) initiative, and is funded by prominent foundations including the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the James Irvine Foundation and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The new institute aims to help K-12 and postsecondary education stakeholders and institutions use data to identify and implement change to improve outcomes.

A Call for Input on CTE Policy Issues - IHELP researchers are continuing to focus on CTE in the California community colleges with the ultimate goal of understanding how state policy can best support the operation and effectiveness of the CTE mission. This involves learning how current policies may prevent colleges from implementing CTE programs most effectively and what new policies might help. IHELP researchers are eager to learn from CTE educators around the state and are scheduling phone calls and site visits. Interested individuals are invited to contact us at ihelp@csus.edu.


Features This Month

Concerns about Performance-based Funding and Ways that States are Addressing the Concerns

As the nation’s colleges and universities struggle with limited budgets and demands for increased degree completion, states are once again looking at performance-based funding as a way to increase efficiency and reward institutions for access and success. This new IHELP brief examines concerns that have arisen about performance-based funding and summarizes the ways that states are addressing, or could address, the concerns. This four-page brief was written by IHELP Director Nancy Shulock as part of her work with the California Community Colleges’ Student Success Task Force and is intended to inform discussions for states that are considering changes to postsecondary education funding models.

View the brief

In case you missed it - Performance Incentives to Improve Community College Completion: Learning from Washington State’s Student Achievement Initiative

This policy brief, jointly produced by IHELP and the Community College Research Center (CCRC) at Columbia University, offers lessons to date about the Student Achievement Initiative (SAI), a policy adopted by the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges that draws on intermediate measures of student progress to reward colleges for improvements in student achievement. The policy brief examines policy choices that Washington faced in designing and implementing SAI, the choices that leaders in other states will confront when considering adopting performance incentive policies as a means to improve student outcomes. Funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the three-year evaluation will include an examination of the impact of SAI on college efforts to improve student outcomes and on student outcomes.  

View the report

Spotlight On

Embracing Higher Education Opportunities at the “Crossroads” – Creating a new public agenda and making crucial fundamental changes for the future of higher education and the success of our nation is the message behind a new report jointly produced by the Miller Center at the University of Virginia and the Association of Governing Boards (AGB). The report, a result of a joint meeting held in December 2010 by the Miller Center, AGB, the National Conference on State Legislatures (NCSL), and the National Governors Association (NGA), discusses the severe challenges faced by higher education in the United States and offers recommendations for policy and institutional changes to achieve higher rates of successful degree completion. The recommendations include ensuring that institutions focus their resources and efforts on strategies that increase completions and on improving state and federal leadership to create policies that incentivize change and support colleges and universities in their efforts to meet national goals for educational attainment. The report includes a summary of the conference and papers of higher education leaders presented at the conference. To view the report, click the link below.

Front and Center – Critical Choices for Higher Education

Sacramento State Institute For Higher Education Leadership & Policy

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