Ensuring that Proficient Means Prepared: Higher Education’s Commitment to College- and Career-Ready Standards and Assessments

statementOn July 7, SHEEO, along with the National Association of System Heads and Higher Education for Higher Standards, released a statement on an issue vital to higher education: ensuring that proficient in high school means prepared for college.

Each year, about 50 percent of first-year students at two-year colleges and 20 percent of those entering four-year institutions require remediation before they can begin credit-bearing coursework. This lack of preparedness costs students and taxpayers billions of dollars each year. This preparation gap stagnates our educational system and exacerbates the business communities’ problem of filling jobs with qualified workers. To that end, SHEEO, NASH and Higher Education for Higher Standards have reaffirmed a commitment to work with K-12 colleagues to enable students to succeed in college work:

  • Scores on high school assessments now will have a meaningful connection to college and career success: Meeting standards will mean that students are prepared for successful transition into credit-bearing college coursework and training opportunities.
  • Because the new assessments are tied to the higher standards of proficiency society now demands of students, we expect initial scores on K-12 assessments to be lower than those students, families and educators are accustomed to seeing. This is not cause for alarm nor an indictment of our K-12 educators – the tests are simply providing a more accurate assessment of our students’ readiness for the demands of postsecondary life.  States that have raised standards and expectations in the past have seen scores come back lower than on previous tests but in reality we’re establishing a new baseline because assessments are aiming higher. Scores rebound as students and teachers adjust to new and higher expectations.
  • As leaders in higher education, we must be prepared to change practices in our higher education institutions to provide for smoother transitions and placement policies for students who meet the new standards and to work with our K-12 colleagues to ensure that students can and will succeed.
  • Higher education wants to be part of this successful transition toward closing the preparation gap.

Real the full statement here: http://higheredforhigherstandards.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/JointStatement.pdf