Closing the College Gap: A Roadmap to Postsecondary Readiness and Attainment
Throughout much of the 20th century, the United States led the world in educational attainment and, in turn, economic and social progress. But that advantage has been slipping in recent decades, prompting the president and a host of governors and philanthropic leaders to set goals for America to reclaim its place as the world leader in the education of its people, and to foster the economic, social, and civic progress that would result. In Part I of this report, the authors examine new and existing data on three successive cohorts of young adults whose educational attainment at 25-34 years of age can be measured today or projected in the future. The current cohort of 25- to 34-year-olds graduated from high school in 2008 or earlier and earned postsecondary degrees in 2014 or earlier; the second cohort is in postsecondary education or finishing high school; and the third cohort is in 1st through 10th grades today. In Part II of this report, the authors work to develop a road map to postsecondary success for all. They argue that a key to progress is taking a hard look at how we currently define college readiness and making sure that educators, parents, and students are focused on the high school outcomes that matter the most for postsecondary success. In the last section of the report, the authors lay out the most pressing challenges the nation must solve and where innovations will be needed the most, in order for postsecondary attainment rates to continue to rise and for opportunity gaps to continue to close.
Balfanz, R., DePaoli, J., Ingram, E. S., Bridgeland, J. M., Fox, J. H., Civic Enterprises, John Hopkins University, & Everyone Graduates Center . (2016). Closing the college gap: A Roadmap to postsecondary readiness and attainment (ED575785). ERIC. https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED572785.pdf