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Wednesday, July 14, 2004

9:30 AM -- 11:30 AM


State Strategies to Improve Higher Education: Developing a Public Agenda
Plaza B
Changes in the past two decades the transition to a knowledge-based economy, the growing number of young people and adult learners seeking access to postsecondary education, the increased diversity of students and the workforce are forcing public leaders to rethink some fundamental assumptions about how to achieve the public purposes of higher education. This special governors' session will highlight the work of the National Collaborative for Postsecondary Education Policy, a joint effort of three policy organizations whose ultimate goal is to help states improve their quality of life by rethinking the delivery and nature of postsecondary education. Governors from states participating in the collaborative will share their experiences and thoughts, and discuss the challenges and benefits of looking at postsecondary education from a state, rather than an institutional, perspective.


2:00 PM -- 3:30 PM


Preparation, Price and Performance: Barriers to College Access and Success, and What State Policymakers Can Do About Them
Plaza C
Almost everyone today agrees some form of education and training beyond high school is mandatory for a good life. Demand for postsecondary education and training is expected to increase substantially over the next decade as the full impact of demographic and economic forces is felt. But in a growing number of states, people's opportunity to obtain a postsecondary education as well as the state's ability to provide one is being seriously challenged. Learn about barriers to college access and success, and hear about state policies and programs that are helping to ensure all prospective students are prepared to go to college, able to afford the costs of attendance and capable of completing their learning goals once enrolled.


2:00 PM -- 3:30 PM


What's New and Promising in Teacher Preparation?
Plaza A
While the debate over alternative teacher preparation has been pretty well laid to rest, questions about what's really effective in teacher preparation remain. One conclusion that can be drawn from the ECS report Eight Questions on Teacher Preparation: What Does the Research Say, is that the research is inconclusive about what works. Several new efforts are under way to improve the way teachers are prepared, including increased clinical training, more-rigorous alternative preparation and an extended role for community colleges. This session will explore these efforts and discuss their promise.


4:00 PM -- 5:00 PM


Roundtable 7 -- Knocking at the College Door: Projections of High School Graduates and the Policy Implications for States
The demographic characteristics of the U.S. population document a significant shift in the makeup of the American family and thus the composition of our schools. In terms of the numbers of children, their racial/ethnic backgrounds and their socioeconomic levels, graduates of the nation's high schools reflect a far more complex and varied group than we have seen in the past. This roundtable will draw on new projections of high school graduates produced by the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education in Knocking at the College Door. The roundtable will explore some of the major findings related to high school graduates generally and to their racial/ethnic and family income characteristics.

Facilitator: Cheryl Blanco, Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education


4:00 PM -- 5:00 PM


Roundtable 17 -- Aligning the College Board Proficiencies and Standards with Entry-level College Courses and High School College-prep Courses
Learn what practices a study of the alignment of the College Board Proficiences and Standards is looking at in 150 postsecondary institutions and a similar number of high schools nationally. These practices will help to determine the alignment and the gap between what's expected in college and what's taught in high school. The reference point for college courses are the Standards for Success Knowledge and Skills for University Success, and for high school the College Board Proficiencies and Standards. The results of the study will be used to help college-admissions exams such as SAT and AP better assess college-success skills and point out these desired skills to high schools. The research method can be replicated at the local or state level to determine how well high schools and postsecondary institutions have aligned their expectations for student success and how well their programs connect.

Facilitator: David T. Conley, University of Oregon, Center for Educational Policy Research and Standards for Success


4:00 PM -- 5:00 PM


Roundtable 20 -- Do Early Intervention Programs Work To Increase Awareness and Readiness for College?
State and federal governments have made substantial financial commitments in programs designed to increase the likelihood that children of low-income parents will enroll, persist and graduate from college at rates comparable to those of their more affluent peers. The goals of those investments, nonetheless, remain elusive. This session will share recent findings from a three-year national study of comprehensive, integrated intervention programs designed to increase the readiness of low-income middle school children and their parents for college. Analyses indicate such programs can elevate students' academic performance, and both students' and parents' perceptions of college as a future possibility.

Facilitators: Patrick Terenzini, Center for the Study of Higher Education, Pennsylvania State University; and Regina Deil-Amen, Education Policy Studies, Pennsylvania State University


4:00 PM -- 5:00 PM


Roundtable 22 -- Improving Postsecondary Readiness Through P-16 Curriculum Alignment
Any job above lowest wage and/or skill level in the high-tech, information, service-based economy of the 21st century requires some form of postsecondary training. Yet large numbers of students do not finish postsecondary programs on time or at all. To reduce ambiguity and provide the greatest chance for student success in postsecondary education, secondary and postsecondary educators must agree upon the skill and knowledge expectations students need to have as they leave high school. Find out what benchmarks have been set for the ACT English, mathematics and science assessments and course sequences that increase the likelihood of meeting those benchmarks. This discussion will promote P-16 collaboration on articulation.

Facilitators: Diane Schnelker and Julie Noble, ACT, Inc.


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Thursday, July 15, 2004

10:15 AM -- 11:45 AM


What -- and How Much -- Do Students Learn in College?
Plaza F
Since the release of Measuring Up 2000, the National Forum on College-Level Learning has been addressing the issue of student learning in higher education. This session will inform state policymakers about the findings from a five-state trial of a model for assessing the intellectual skills of the college-educated population. In addition to the feasibility of the model and what it reveals about collegiate learning in the pilot states, the panel will discuss the study's possible implications for state policy.


2:15 PM -- 3:30 PM


Connecting the Dots: What State Policymakers Need To Know about Federal Higher Education Legislation
Plaza F
Congress is currently engaged in reauthorizing two major pieces of legislation affecting community colleges and universities the Higher Education Act (HEA) and the Workforce Investment Act (WIA). Both have considerable implications for state higher education policy, particularly in the areas of affordability and accountability. But just how do pending actions in Washington translate to the statehouse? The session will provide a "real-time" update on important bills, and engage participants in a dialogue about what it means for the states.


4:00 PM -- 5:00 PM


Higher Education Reform: Ready or Not?
Plaza F
For most of the last decade, public opinion has been remarkably complacent about higher education. Beyond concerns about the price tag, the public has been more or less satisfied with the product. The most recent surveys, however, suggest a possible change in attitude. But is the public really ready for the kind of radical reform being called for by a growing number of forward-thinking campus and state leaders? Hear about and debate new ideas currently being tested or tried in the states, including offering competency-based degrees, freeing colleges from state regulation, operating campuses year-round and giving tuition "vouchers" directly to students. Is the public ready for such changes? Are you?


4:00 PM -- 5:00 PM


Competing in the 21st-century Economy: State Education Strategies To Meet Workforce Needs
Plaza G
More than two-thirds of the jobs being created in the fastest-growing sectors of the U.S. economy office jobs, health care jobs and teaching positions require at least some education beyond high school. Creating enough college-educated workers to meet the demand will require smarter investment strategies for the dollars currently devoted to postsecondary education. States that do not get enough of their students through college are going to lose jobs, skilled workers and tax revenue to states that do. Learn how a large multinational company views the need for skilled workers and how two- and four-year institutions are responding.




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