New Guide For State Policy Makers to Improve Completion



Complete College America, an organization dedicated to increasing graduation rates, released a report this month to guide state lawmakers in how to equitably craft and implement policies to improve statewide college completion rates.

“States must be willing to change the status quo to remain competitive in the future and fill workforce demands with a diverse, engaged, educated citizenry,” the report states.

The report, called “Beyond Good Intentions,” advises that state policy makers disaggregate student outcomes data to determine which student groups are enrolling in but not completing college. It then suggests convening a task force, including students from those groups and faculty and staff members who regularly interact with them, and giving them a set timeline to develop policy recommendations. The report recommends looking for proven strategies that improve student outcomes at scale, rather than boutique programs, and determining in advance what financial support and training administrators and faculty members would need to implement the strategies.

It notes that policy proposals should clearly outline how a policy will affect specific student groups but also benefit all students and include specific details about funding and how outcomes will be measured. It adds that the rollout of a statewide policy should be publicized through social media and other platforms and involve a website, webinars and other materials explaining the policy to the public.

“Developing equity-driven policy lays the groundwork to close institutional performance gaps and realize this vision,” the report reads. “But even the best-crafted policy needs to be followed with strong implementation.”



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