Regardless of where a school is located and how well it is performing, students who work hard should still be able to graduate ready to succeed in college and the workforce, right? Unfortunately, that is not the case for millions of students nationwide.
ExcelinEd’s report College and Career Pathways: Equity and Access identifies significant gaps in high school students’ access to college and career preparation courses. Based on ExcelinEd’s analysis of the U.S. Department of Education’s Civil Rights Data Collection (CRDC), this report provides a startling look at access and equity in our nation and presents a path forward for states.
ExcelinEd’s CRDC analysis shows that far too many students do not have access to fundamental courses needed for success in college and career. In addition, the data revealed significant equity issues for certain school types and populations.
- 29 percent of schools serving high populations of minority students don’t offer Biology, compared to the U.S. average of 23 percent.
- 60 percent of high poverty schools don’t offer Physics, compared to the U.S. average of 47 percent.
Solutions for States
If states know which math, science and advanced learning opportunities students have access to, they can better understand how that access (or lack thereof) may impact students’ futures as well as the future of local, state and national workforces and economies.
ExcelinEd has identified a three-step process states can consider using to overcome gaps in access to core courses.
- Evaluate: Conduct a statewide audit of course offerings and access.
- Communicate: Inform families of courses necessary for college and career readiness and options to access those courses.
- Improve: Identify policy solutions to improve access for students.