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April 03
Journal Spotlight: Creating a Community of Scholars on the Edge of Disaster

jca222creatingcover.pngEvery other week, the Journal of College Admission will highlight a current article or other Journal-related findings. In this post, we hear more from Jason Klugman, the author of “Creating a Community of Scholars on the Edge of Disaster” (Downloads: Member / Non-member​​). He shares some experiences with disasters and ways in which the program works to help scholars achieve their best future.

How can other institutions start an outreach plan like Princeton University Preparatory Program (PUPP)? How did Princeton (NJ) do it?

PUPP began as a brainstorm between Sociology Professor Miguel Centeno and the former director of Princeton’s Program in Teacher Preparation, John Webb. The idea emerged from an institutional study in the late 1990s of Princeton’s applicant pool and the relative dearth of low-income applicants to the university. It also came from Professor Centeno’s own experience as a first-generation college student who was asked by his roommates at Yale his freshman year where he “summered?” (Who knew “summer” was a verb?)

So, the idea that gained the most traction was to partner with our local community to create an initiative that was ambitious in scope, but locally and strategically focused—and to allow high-achieving, low-income students from our local area to be able to say that they “summered” at Princeton!

In 2000, Centeno and Webb created a local advisory committee with our initial partner school districts—Trenton Public Schools, Ewing Township Public Schools and Princeton Public Schools—consisting of counselors and teachers and other officials to begin the design of the mission and vision of PUPP. By the summer of 2001, PUPP launched with its first cohort of students and big dreams about the goals of program—but very little formal structure. When I came on board in 2004, PUPP had graduated its first class of high school students, but was still basically staffed by one half-time staff member! Coming from a teaching position at an urban high school, I knew intuitively that we needed more—more staff, more programming, more support services, etc. And, over time, we were able to expand and deepen the components of the program, taking our scholar handbook from four pages to 20, adding a full-time counselor, raising the expectations of our summer classes and after school sessions, creating a more comprehensive recruitment and application process, and more robust transition to college and alumni support services. 

A good set of first steps is for institutions to take the pulse of their communities to see what is already in existence and where they can enhance existing partnerships or build something in collaboration with local schools and communities. A key part of our success is the deep relationships we have built with our local schools. We knew that the local community college was deeply involved in Trenton, but there weren’t many other options for students in surrounding communities. We continue to nurture the relationships we have with schools and community organizations, as well as local social service providers to best serve our scholars. Also, you have to start identifying resources in the community and at your institution to support activities, professional staff and in-kind contributions to create a long-term plan for funding (and fundraising).

A good next step would be to reach out to folks currently doing the work to get first-hand advice about recruiting students, program components, lessons learned, etc. I have a wonderful collection of colleagues in the field—at the University of Chicago (IL), Harvard (MA), Rutgers (NJ), Elon (NC), and at non-profits like the Fulfillment Fund in Los Angeles and Prep for Prep—and I call on them for advice and guidance and brainstorming ideas. Over the past few years, PUPP has helped provide what I would call “technical assistance” and “moral support” to folks launching programs at universities and in communities across the country. What is wonderful about this kind of work is that it often intensely mission-driven and staff of program like PUPP, or Collegiate Scholars at the University of Chicago, or Rutgers Future Scholars are always willing to help provide everything from sample student applications and admission guidelines to scholar handbooks and summer program schedules. Further, there are some great resources provided by the National College Access Network (NCAN) and the National Partnership for Educational Access to help schools, colleges and community-based organizations develop and enhance their programming. 

How can school counselors and community-based organizations connect students in need with programs like PUPP?

It’s tough to know where to look for programs in your local area. Here in New Jersey, there was a state supported website that listed pre-college programs, but it hasn’t been updated in years. Some great resources are already mentioned—NCAN) has a state-by-state program directory and there are a growing number of regional college access collaborations like the Philadelphia College Prep Roundtable and the Southern California College Access Network. Also, local “ACAC” groups often do outreach work and college admission officers are a great resource to help bridge connections and networks. Additionally, NACAC has justed launched a Directory of College Access & Success Programs​ that offers information and contacts for hundreds of programs that help underrepresented students to prepare for, gain admission to and graduate from college.

Another place to search is local colleges, universities and community colleges where many federally funded “TRIO” programs are in operation—Upward Bound, Talent Search and Gear Up. Also, community-based organizations like the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, the YMCA and YWCA, have been increasing their focus on college and career readiness and may be a good connecting resource for students who could benefit from college preparation programming and support. Finally, most colleges and universities have individuals in their office of community affairs or civic engagement that will know about resources and programs available for high school students. 

What is the strangest "disaster" you've ever helped a student with?

I wouldn’t say that there have been “strange” disasters. Certainly some are more complicated than others—whether it is trying to track down a non-custodial parent in a foreign country or help a family through the process of getting electricity turned back on and discovering more about the extended family that we didn’t know until that moment. Nothing strikes me as strange. In fact, I think if I had to qualify disasters, they would be around the outrage and tragedy of things like the crumbling school buildings where some of our students are expected to learn. In fact, I’m regularly in classrooms with leaking roofs, pealing plaster and caution tape—and I think about the rhetoric of school reform that just completely disregards the realities that many of these students face. 

Now, post-publication, is there anything you'd like to add? 

I would like to thank NACAC and the Editorial Committee of the Journal of College Admission​ for the opportunity to share some of the experiences that we have had with our scholars and to begin a conversation about strategies to support students in difficult situations. I’ve had some great feedback about the article and the scale and I wonder how/if folks can use it to work strategically with their students to really help explore the factors that will lead to better decision. I could certainly write the article many times over with examples from the almost 300 scholars and alumni in PUPP, and I appreciate the opportunity to continue to learn from the scholars and from my colleagues about how to best serve these remarkable young people and the strive to meet their full potential.

jca222jklugman.gifJason Klugman is the director of the Princeton University Preparatory Program (PUPP) and a lecturer and program associate with Princeton’s Program in Teacher Preparation. He earned his doctorate in Education, Culture and Society from the University of Pennsylvania. He has broad expertise in urban education, college access and success, and teacher preparation.

March 26
Journal Spotlight: Crisis Management: Changing Times for Colleges

jca222crisismgmtcover.jpgEvery other week, the Journal of College Admission will highlight a current article or other Journal-related findings. In this post, we hear more from Lonnie Booker, Jr., the author of “Crisis Management: Changing Times for Colleges” (Downloads: Member / Non-member​​). He offers information on how to create a flexible crisis plan for the admission department, leadership roles and continuous learning process. Additionally, this article addresses the department’s leadership roles during a crisis event. Lastly, the need for continuous learning is addressed. 

How can practitioners—educators at all levels—begin crisis planning? 

All faculty, staff and administration (campus stakeholders) can begin the process of crisis planning by simply starting the discussion of planning. Once the discussion starts, campus stakeholders must first assess their campus/department for vulnerabilities and threats. A quick way to start this discussion is to have a very short, but simple, table top exercise/scenario during their next department meeting. The scenario can be as simple as addressing the possibility of losing electricity to a building. Stakeholders would discuss the scenario and how to address the four phases of emergency management (mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery). At that point the department can begin to construct crisis plans.

How can employees get those at the top of the ladder to make crisis planning a priority?

Gaining the interest from the administration can be a challenge. The key is to show that their institution and/or department would benefit greatly by having a crisis plan in place. Institutions of higher education provide a service to their students. That is, they provide them with an education. Students are able to learn and be more actively engaged knowing that they are safe and secure. Thus, administration sets the tone of providing a campus environment that is safe and conducive for learning. To provide a safe environment, there must be plans in place to protect the campus and its stakeholders in case of a disastrous event. Moreover, there is literature that indicates many administrators approach crisis planning from a reactive perspective rather than a proactive perspective. However, this notion is changing due to the many crisis events that have occurred throughout the nation and now more administrators are actively working on campus crisis plans.

Do you have a model to share with institutions who want to get this discussion started? Are there any schools you'd recommend as good examples?

Currently, the model I would suggest utilizing would be the National Response Framework (NRF). This plan is for an all hazard approach to disasters and serves as an outline for a plan institutions should follow. One of the requirements for institutions to obtain federal funding after a disaster is that they must follow and utilize the National Incident Management System (NIMS) which includes Incident Command Structure (ICS). Stakeholders can find information by going to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) web page. This guide will help institutions begin the process of creating a plan for their institutions. The most important aspect to planning is in the practice of the plan.  

Now, post-publication, is there anything you'd like to add?

I would like to thank the Journal for College Admission for providing an opportunity to open up the discussion on crisis plans. So far, the discussion of planning has been done only in small areas… But this topic should expand to everyone who works in higher education. Knowledge is power and to increase the knowledge, stakeholders must talk about crisis planning and how they would respond to an event. I would like to think crisis plans are like insurance policies that we have on our vehicles and homes.  We pay a price for the protection from something happening, but when an event does occur we are happy we had the insurance to help us to recover.

jca222lonniebooker.gifDr. Lonnie Booker​ received his PhD from Texas A&M University–College Station in higher education administration and a certification in homeland security from the Bush School of Public Policy. His research and scholarly interests include campus safety and institutional crisis management planning. He has amassed more than 13 years of law enforcement experience currently. He is the director/assistant professor of emergency management for Kansas Wesleyan University.

March 19
International Student Mobility: New National Policies

​A Competitive Market for Internationally Mobile Students 

In 2011, nearly 4.3 million students were enrolled in postsecondary education outside their country of citizenship according to the OECD (OECD, 2013). By 2025, it is expected that this number will increase to nearly 7 million students (Hudzik, 2012). Though the number of internationally mobile students coming to the United States continues to increase, the United States’ market share is diminishing and global competition is increasing. 

 
 

The OECD report recognizes that one of the factors driving an increase in student mobility is countries’ major marketing efforts to attract international students (OECD, 2013). This finding was reinforced by recent pieces by University World News titled, Mass Movement of the World’s Students, a special report which highlights the concerted efforts by other countries to recruit internationally mobile students, and by ICEF, which focused its article on summarizing top-level trends in student mobility (Summing up student mobility in 2014). The following represent a sample of countries that are increasing efforts to recruit internationally mobile students. 

Canada 

In January 2014, Canada launched a new International Education Strategy “designed to maintain and enhance Canada’s global position in higher education” (Harper Government, 2014). Leveraging what the country sees as its strong and unique higher education system, the government will increase its investment to highlight Canada as a world-class education destination worldwide in priority areas of focus including Brazil, China, India, Mexico, Turkey, and Vietnam. 

Building awareness of Canada is a global project, including significant efforts in North America. Canada attracts the second largest number of U.S. students pursuing degrees abroad; second to Americans studying in the UK (IIE Project Atlas, New Frontiers: U.S. Students Pursuing Degrees Abroad, 2013). Based on this, the U.S. has always been and will continue to be a top market for Canada. The Embassy of Canada in Washington leads the U.S. network of 15 consulates on education promotion and is a resource to connect U.S. counselors, students and parents with the right contacts to answer questions about a Canadian education

Canada’s goal is to attract more than 450,000 international researchers and students by 2022, which is double the current number of international students studying in Canada. 

France

With a goal to increase international student enrollment from 12.3% in 2012 to 20% by 2025, President Francois Hollande plans to introduce new measures to make France more attractive to international students (Custer, 2014, March). Ideas include simplifying visa processes and extending rights to work following academic study (Custer). France’s Minister of Higher Education, Genevieve Fioraso, stated that the country will continue to recruit students from Africa, as it has historically done, but will look to broaden its reach to attract students from Korea, Indonesia, Japan, Brazil, India and the United States.

Japan

The Japanese government is increasing recruitment efforts in hopes of attracting 300,000 international students over the next six years to make up for the “mass exodus” of international students in 2011 as a result of the tsunami and Fukushima nuclear disaster (Kakuchi, 2014). As part of an overall globalization plan, these efforts to recruit more internationally mobile students are paralleled by initiatives to attract top teachers and researchers from foreign universities to Japanese institutions and to send more Japanese students abroad. 

Malaysia

Malaysia is becoming an emerging study location in Asia for international students. Motivated by an anticipated positive impact on the economy, the government is aiming to attract 200,000 international students to the country by 2020, up from about 100,000 today (Malaysia, 2012). Malaysia touts a stable, safe, and relatively inexpensive location for international students to study and hopes to attract students in both existing and new markets including the Middle East, China, and Africa (Malaysia). An additional attraction for international students is that Malaysia has become an education hub drawing top universities around the world to open branch campuses with which Malaysian institutions can partner (Dewi, 2012). 

New Zealand

Over the next four years, New Zealand will be investing $40 million in marketing the country’s international education industry (Joyce, 2013). The government believes that the boost in funding will enable them to better promote New Zealand as a study destination with “qualifications that are valued and transferable throughout the world” (Joyce). New Zealand hopes to double the current value of international education to $5 billion by 2025, and will focus recruitment activities in key markets including China, India, Southeast Asia, and South America (Joyce). 

Taiwan

Taiwan has stated a goal of attracting 150,000 international students, or 10 percent of the student population, by 2020 (Custer, 2014, January). Given the growth in international students in recent years—30,000 in 2008 to 78,000 in 2013—the government believes this new goal is achievable (Custer). The main motivation, according to President Ma Ying-jeou, is to strengthen relationships with other countries (Custer). The main draws for students include increased scholarship opportunities, improved academic reputation, and more courses taught in English, as well being a democratic society close to China (Custer). With regard to China, one of Taiwan’s main avenues for achieving greater international student enrollment is to ease regulations for inbound Chinese students (Custer).

Efforts in the U.S. 

Though the U.S. attracts the largest number of international students, there is room for growth as international students only represent approximately 4 percent of the nearly 21 million students on American campuses (Open Doors, 2013). Additionally, the majority of international students study at fewer than 200 of the United States’ 4000 institutions (IIE, 2011). Recognizing this potential, a variety of initiatives are underway to promote U.S. higher education to an international audience.

Though the U.S. lacks a coordinated national effort compared to other countries, the state consortia approach is gaining momentum. Currently 34 states or regions in the United States have formed, or are in the process of forming, consortia in order to pool resources and coordinate marketing efforts to attract international students. A list maintained by the US Department of Commerce can be found here.

Additionally, the State Department’s EducationUSA network has more than 400 advising centers around the world to actively promote US higher education. The advising centers offer accurate, comprehensive, and timely information about US higher education institutions to help international students find the best fit for their academic and personal goals. Learn more about how US institutions can work with EducationUSA​

Common Goal: Quality Education Opportunities

It is important to understand that though countries may be in competition for internationally mobile students, it is not a zero sum gain. Meeting the demand for quality education should be championed globally and higher education institutions will need to ensure that they are “a central and vital part of the flow of talent” (Strength, 2011). 

Sources

Custer, S. (2014, January 13). Taiwan aims for 150,000 foreign students in six years. The PIE News. Retrieved from http://thepienews.com/news/taiwan-aims-150000-six-years/ 

Custer, S. (2014, March 4). France extends post study work, aims for 20% foreign enrolments. The PIE News. Retrieved from http://thepienews.com/news/france-extends-post-study-work-aims-20-foreign-enrolments/ 

Dewi, M. (2012, October 28). Slow but steady growth in foreign branch campuses. University World News, 245. Retrieved from http://www.universityworldnews.com/article.php?story=20121025152705175 

Harper government launches comprehensive international education strategy. (2014, January 15). Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada. Retrieved from http://www.international.gc.ca/media/comm/news-communiques/2014/01/15a.aspx?lang=eng

Hudzik, J. K. (2012). Trends and institutional implications for international ttudent enrollments in U.S. institutions. Trends & Insights for International Education Leaders. NAFSA: Association of International Educators. Retrieved from http://www.nafsa.org/Content.aspx?id=31232&LangType=1033

Institute of International Education (IIE). (2011). What international students think about US higher education: Attitudes and perceptions of prospective students in Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America. Retrieved from file:///C:/Users/laddington/Downloads/IIE_Student_Attitudinal_Survey_Report%20(2).pdf 

Joyce, S. (2013, May 16). $40m to boost international education. New Zealand Government. Retrieved from http://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/40m-boost-international-education

Kakuchi, S. (2014, January 31). Boosting foreign student numbers to 300,000. University World News, 305. Retrieved from http://www.universityworldnews.com/article.php?story=20140129160918747

Malaysia to earn RM6 bln from 200,000 international students by 2020. (2012, July 17). Borneo Post online. Retrieved from http://www.theborneopost.com/2012/07/17/malaysia-to-earn-rm6-bln-from-200000-international-students-by-2020/ 

OECD. (2013). Education at a Glance: OECD Indicators. OECD Publishing. Retrieved from http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/education/education-at-a-glance-2013_eag-2013-en

Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange. (2013). Institute of International Education. Retrieved from http://www.iie.org/Research-and-Publications/Open-Doors/Data

Strength through Global Leadership and Engagement: U.S. Higher Education in the 21st Century. (2011). American Council on Education. Retrieved from www.acenet.edu/news-room/Pages/Strength-through-Global-Leadership-and-Engagement.aspx 


March 12
What Do You Think About the Proposed Federal College Ratings System?

​The Obama Administration’s proposal to construct a college ratings system has generated a great deal of discussion and more than a little concern in the higher education community. While NACAC has been supportive of the Administration’s efforts to promote consumer information and awareness to facilitate informed enrollment decisions (see College Navigator, Standardized Aid Award Letter, College Scorecard, to name a few), we have expressed concerns about institutionalizing a federal ratings system. We have dedicated some space on our College Rankings web page for this issue, and have submitted our official comments to the Administration. We would also encourage you to share your comments with us. We’ll post a summary of comments we receive on the Counselor’s Corner.

March 11
Journal Spotlight: African American Students’ Multiple Transitions Following Hurricane Katrina

jca222expandingcover.jpgEvery other week, the Journal of College Admission will highlight a current article or other Journal-related findings. In this post, we hear more from Lori D. Patton, one of the authors of “Expanding Transition Theory: African American Students’ Multiple Transitions Following Hurricane Katrina” (Downloads: Member / Non-member​). They examine the experiences of college students displaced following Hurricane Katrina, particularly considering what students’ experiences reveal about the process of
transition.

How can practitioners—educators at all levels—use transition theory to guide their work with students? How can the theory be implemented during other disasters and even less-stressful transitions?
Transition theory can be used as a framework for understanding the wide range of transitions that students face whether the transition is prompted by a major life event or brought about with limited impact on an individual. The theory is useful for gaining a sense of the processes involved with transition and how individuals may experience their situations. While transition theory is not a “catch-all” theory, it can help practitioners and educators to take a more comprehensive approach to supporting students in their educational endeavors.

You shared several difficulties students experienced during their transitions. What advice do you have for colleges/universities hosting these students in addition to orienting them better? Can you think of examples of colleges/universities that successfully transitioned the majority of their incoming students?
Colleges and universities should always have a plan in place to serve students who are displaced due to major events. Such a should place students’ needs at the forefront. Aside from orienting students to the institution, which is critical, supports should be in place for counseling, financial aid, engaging students in campus activities, and ensuring that should they choose to return to their home institution, the transition out is smooth and manageable.

Did your interviewees say anything that surprised you?
The most surprising thing they said dealt with the issue of exposure. Some of the participants who were from New Orleans spoke about a bridge/or city line that divided the city racially and economically. As a result many African American families had never been beyond their own communities; nor had they been outside of New Orleans or the state of Louisiana. On one hand they chose to stay within certain city boundaries because that was their understanding of “home.” On the other hand they received messages that indicated that they were not welcomed or did not belong on the other side. One participant who had grown up in the Ninth Ward, shared that had it not been for the Hurricane and subsequent flooding, she was certain that many of her family members and friends would have never gone to Houston and other cities that were assisting displaced families. While she was saddened by the storm, she appreciated to some degree, that it pushed some people beyond their comfort level, exposed them to new environments and provided opportunities to connect beyond New Orleans. However, the storm had done very little in terms of helping those privileged by race and money to understand living conditions and life circumstances for some African American families in the city.
 
You note that colleges/universities should develop policies and procedures to communicate and cooperate with one another. Do you have a model to share with institutions who want to get this discussion started?
I don’t have a model, but I think that national organizations like NACAC can bring colleagues together to create a set of policies and/or memos of understanding that can be taken back to institutions for enactment. For example, it would be an excellent idea for NACAC to help coordinate admission offices across the country to generate a template or a plan for serving displaced students. Each institution’s representative can take the template back to their respective school and revise it as needed to ensure that it adheres to any specific campus policies. I think a webpage on NACAC, or an independent site, where these policies are posted would also be a helpful, cooperative measure so that information is readily available.

jca222loripatton.gifLori D. Patton is associate professor in the higher education and student affairs program in the Indiana University School of Education. Her research agenda focuses on African Americans in postsecondary contexts, critical race theory applied to higher education, college student development and the influence of campus environments on student experiences.

February 25
Important New Resource for Veterans Education Benefits

​Are you a military or Veteran student using Post-9/11 GI Bill or tuition assistance benefits to attend a school or training program? You can help improve the education experience for future student Veterans and Service members by providing feedback on your school online today.

The Departments of Veterans Affairs (VA), Defense (DOD) and Education (ED) just released an online feedback tool designed to give students the power to report negative experiences with the educational institutions or training programs they are attending as part of the Post-9/11 GI Bill and military tuition assistance programs.

VA, DOD and ED, along with the Department of Justice, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and Federal Trade Commission will review complaints and identify any problems that need to be addressed. By reporting problems, you can help improve the school experience for future students.

Provide feedback online at:
GI Bill beneficiaries: www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/feedback.asp
Tuition Assistance (TA) & Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts (MyCAA) Scholarship recipients: www.militaryonesource.mil/voluntary-education/complaint
Federal financial aid recipients, email: Compliancecomplaints@ed.gov

The new feedback system is just one in a series of new tools launched recently to help Veteran and military education beneficiaries learn more about their vocational aptitudes, select an education institution and best use their benefits. Additional resources include:

•    The ‘Factors to Consider When Choosing a School’ guide offers future students steps to take when researching, choosing and attending a school.
•    CareerScope® is a free, new tool that measures a student’s aptitude and interests through a self-administered online test, identifying potential career paths.

February 21
PCACAC "On the Hill" in Annapolis, Maryland
Maryland members of the Potomac and Chesapeake Association for College Admission Counseling (PCACAC) met this week in Annapolis for an advocacy lunch with state legislators. This year, the association is supporting a bill by Delegate Anne Kaiser (D-14) who is chair of the Education subcommittee. HB 571 would require (contingent on appropriations) each local school system to develop and adopt a plan to achieve a student to counselor ratio of at least 250:1 and ensure counselors spend at least 80 percent of their time performing direct services to students. The bill comes after the "College Readiness and Completion Act of 2013" passed last session, which required the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) to submit recommendations to the Governor and General Assembly for developing a plan to improve college and career counseling provided to students in Maryland’s middle and high schools. Among their recommendations included not only reducing the ratio, but also ensuring counselors time “will be focused on college related tasks with students” and “that school counselors are given adequate time to counsel students and provide significant leadership to whole-school college and career readiness efforts.” Read the full report

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February 12
New Report: "Is School Funding Fair? A National Report Card"

​Last week, the Education Law Center (ELC) released the third edition of “Is School Funding Fair? A National Report Card,” which examines each state’s school finance systems since the aftermath of the Great Recession and the end of stimulus funds in regards to equal educational opportunity and fair distribution of resources to the neediest students. The report looks at fairness along four measures- overall per-pupil funding level, funding distribution relative to student poverty, state spending on education relative to state GDP (effort), and the extent to which students attend public schools and the economic disparity between those within and outside of the public education system (coverage).

The new report finds:

  • In 2011, 21% of school-aged children in the US were living below the federal poverty level (approximately $23,000 for a family of four), a 30% increase over levels in 2007. Compounding the challenges of extremely high levels of poverty, students are increasingly concentrated in schools with other poor children. The percentage of U.S. students in high-poverty schools (poverty rates greater than 30%) doubled from 7% in 2007 to 16% in 2011.
  • School funding in the vast majority of states has declined or stayed stagnant. 26 states show declining per pupil revenues since 2010. 14 states are funding schools at an average per-pupil level that is below levels from five years prior, even without adjusting for inflation. 
  • In 2011, funding disparities between states remained very wide. The highest spending state, Wyoming ($17,397) had over two and a half times per-pupil funding of the lowest-spending state, Idaho ($6,753). In 15 states, average funding levels are below $9,000 per pupil.
  • The majority of states have flat or regressive funding distribution patterns that ignore the need for additional funding in high-poverty districts. Only 14 states in 2011 had progressive funding patterns that provide more funding to schools with a higher concentration of poverty. This number increased every year from 2007 to 2010, but in 2011, declined to 2007 levels. The shift in funding distribution was especially severe from 2010 to 2011. In that year, 27 states lost ground and reduced funding fairness.

    Read the full report.

Among several recommendations within NACAC’s Policy Brief on Rigorous Curriculum, NACAC advocates for making K-12 school funding more equitable. View the policy brief.​ 

February 11
NACAC Expresses Concern About Proposed Federal College Ratings System

​Last week, NACAC submitted comments to the U.S. Department of Education in response to the Administration’s college ratings proposal. In its comments, NACAC urged the administration to exercise great caution in considering how to construct such rankings, given that the question at hand seems less a matter of “whether” and more of “how.” NACAC based its concerns on long-standing problems associated with commercial rankings, as outlined in the 2011 report of the Ad Hoc Committee on US News and World Report Rankings. The Administration held a forum in Washington on February 6, during which it heard concerns similar to NACAC’s from a wide range of stakeholders. If you have comments or questions that you would like to see addressed in the Administration’s proposal, please submit them to NACAC.

February 05
Potomac and Chesapeake Government Relations Members Gather in Richmond for Annual Advocacy Day

Virginia Government Relations Committee members of the Potomac and Chesapeake Association for College Admission Counseling (PCACAC) met yesterday in Richmond, VA for their annual Advocacy Day. Several state Legislators and staff stopped by the breakfast meet-and-greet to discuss issues concerning student access to and state funding for postsecondary education. Of particular importance in Virginia this year is the Virginia Tuition Equity Act, which recently failed in a Senate committee by a partisan vote, but is still alive in the House of Delegates. PCACAC members urged legislators to pass tuition equity legislation now, so that undocumented students with Deferred Action status may pursue higher education. To participate in PCACAC's action alert supporting the legislation, visit NACAC's Legislative Action Center.

Also, check out an editorial published this week in The Washington Post in support of the Virginia DREAM Act.

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