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Front Page
Executive Summary

The Case Study for Georgia
The Case Study for Oregon
The Case Study for New York
The Case Study for Florida

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The National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education and its partners, the Stanford Institute for Higher Education Research, and the Institute for Educational Leadership, have spent many years analyzing reforms that span K-12 and postsecondary education, and advocating for K-16 reform. Our current, fractured systems do not serve students well and are based on the outdated view that only an elite group of students attends college. Now, the majority of students attends some form of postsecondary education after high school, but there are a host of problems confronting them. Many do not complete their programs of study, almost half the students in higher education require remediation, and college-going and completion rates are highly inequitable in terms of income level, race, and ethnicity. As student demographics shift in the coming years, and students who are traditionally under-represented in postsecondary education become the majority, our nation could face an educational crisis.

To reverse this course, we must connect high school and postsecondary education standards, policies, and practices. Much of this must occur at the state level. Many of our previous projects, such as those discussed in The Learning Connection, From High School to College, Betraying the College Dream, and Gathering Momentum, spurred us to focus on state governance policies and structures as vehicles to create these changes. This report is an important next step in understanding the role of state governance in K-16 reform.

We wish to thank the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation for its generous support of this project, and for its continued support of this field. The contents of this publication do not necessarily represent the views of the Kauffman Foundation, its officers or staff. We also wish to thank all of the interviewees in our four case study states: Florida, Georgia, New York, and Oregon. They gave us their time and candor about a host of politically sensitive issues. Several reviewers-David Conley, Joseph Creech, Patrick Dallet, Jan Kettlewell, Neil Kleiman, Richard Richardson, Charles Santelli, and Patricia Windham-gave generously of their time, and improved the four case studies from which this report is drawn. We especially wish to thank Shawn Whiteman at the National Center for doing such a superb job staffing this project.

Andrea Venezia, Patrick M. Callan, Joni E. Finney, Michael W. Kirst, and Michael D. Usdan


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