Teachers College, Columbia University

How High Schools and Colleges Can Share Responsibility for Student Success

Date and Time: February 25, 2016 9:00–11:00 AM
Location: Washington, DC
Venue: The National Press Club

In their last year of high school, young people are on the cusp of college, career, and legal adulthood. Too many, however, experience frustration and failure trying to take the critical first step into postsecondary education. Ready or Not: It’s Time to Rethink the 12th Grade argues that senior-year problems cannot be fixed by K-12 acting alone; a joint approach with postsecondary institutions is needed.

At this event, JFF and collaborating authors discussed evidence-based principles of partnerships, practice, and policy that can drive a resurgent effort to rethink and eventually remake the transition from high school to college. The topics of the dialogue revolved around the need for high schools and colleges to engage in:

  1. Co-Design: Deciding on and designing together courses, curricular pathways, and support systems, as well as professional development opportunities and data platforms, that impact what and how students learn.
  2. Co-Delivery: Sharing and coordinating faculty and staff, facilities and other resources to carry out the co-designed learning experiences and supports.
  3. Co-Validation: Accepting agreed-upon assessments, successful completion of performance tasks and experiences, and other indicators of learning as evidence of proficiency, including for placement in credit-bearing, college-level courses.


Senior Research Scholar
Community College Research Center
Michael Grady
Deputy Director
Brown University, Annenberg Institute for School Reform
Jenny Nagaoka
Deputy Director
University of Chicago Consortium on School Research
Joel Vargas
Vice President, School and Learning Designs
Jobs for the Future

Associated Project(s)