February 19-21, 2023
South Padre Island, Texas

From "Random Acts" and "Programs of Privilege" to Dual Enrollment Equity Pathways

February 21, 2023
11:30 am—12:15 pm
South Padre Island Convention Center, Room 202

Drawing on in-depth qualitative data collection examining how three high school and community college partnerships in Texas collaborate to expand access to dual credit (DC) programs, this presentation, co-presented by researchers and K12 and higher educators, will focus on promising strategies and models for expanding access to and success in DC for traditionally underserved student populations, as well as ongoing challenges to expanding access. The presentation will also share the Community College Research Center’s (CCRC) dual enrollment equity pathways (DEEP) model, which advocates for making the school-to-college transition more equitable by intentionally recruiting and supporting low-income and racially minoritized students for DC courses, thereby helping them build postsecondary momentum while in high school. Through this approach, community colleges partner with K-12 schools to: (a) reach out to underserved students and families to encourage and support their participation in DE; (b) align DE course offerings to college baccalaureate transfer and workforce programs in high-opportunity fields; (c) assist with career and academic exploration, advising, and planning; and (d) deliver high-quality college instruction that builds students’ confidence as college learners.

National research on access to DC participation shows persistent racial equity gaps, so it is not surprising that DC is sometimes referred to as “programs of privilege.” Yet, CCRC’s analysis of federal data shows that despite widespread gaps in access, nearly one in five districts have equalized access to DE. This presentation will draw on CCRC’s research to illustrate how colleges and their K12 partners are working to expand access to DC in Texas. Models and strategies shared in the presentation may inspire those in attendance to reexamine enrollment patterns in their own schools/colleges with equity in mind, and/or to consider adopting new models and strategies to expand access.


Maggie P. Fay, Senior Research Associate, CCRC

Sonia Townsend, Dean of Student Development, San Jacinto College

Susan Jackson, Deputy Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction, Goose Creek Memorial Independent School District