Our thanks to Dr. Tiffany Jones, Director of Higher Education Policy at the Education Trust. Dr. Jones shared EdTrust’s recent report “Aiming for Equity: A Guide to Statewide Attainment Goals for Racial Equity Advocates” which includes a national analysis of statewide attainment goals which address racial equity, and a list of models and resources for stakeholders and action steps for advocates based on their states’ progress on setting attainment goals. Our conversation included insights and key findings found in the research.
In order to achieve statewide goals for degree attainment (i.e., the share of adults age 25-64 that have some sort of college degree), it will be necessary to work to close gaps between racial subgroups. While there have been gains in degree attainment over time for Black and Latino adults, a gap in achievement continues to exist. Degree attainment among Black Americans trails the rate for White adults by 16 percentage points, and degree attainment among Latino Americans trails the rate for White adults by about 25 percentage points. More prominent gaps exist at the higher education levels including bachelor’s and advanced graduate degrees.
Source: EdTrust analysis of the United States Census Bureau’s 2016 American Community Survey
EdTrust found that 43 states have a degree attainment goal, but only 29 of the goals included data on gaps in enrollment, persistence, completion, or attainment by race. Additionally, only 25 states identified strategies to improve outcomes for students of color or close racial equity gaps in attainment.
Best practices for state attainment goals include using current attainment levels of the relevant groups as a baseline to set specific, separate attainment goals for racial subgroups. States should also identify and pursue strategies aimed specifically at closing racial attainment gaps, and should aim to increase attainment rates among underrepresented groups more rapidly than the overall population.
For our full conversation with Dr. Jones, please check out the full webinar below!
We hope you’ll join us for our next webinar on Wednesday, March 13th at 1:00 PM EST for a conversation with Kathy Stohr, Project Manager at the Pritzker Children’s Initiative. Kathy will provide an overview of Pritzker’s expanding work supporting children prenatal to three, and highlight exciting new web tools developed as part of the National Collaborative for Infants and Toddlers.We hope you can join us, register here!
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