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Education Publications

Measuring College Readiness Under ESSA: Admissions and Placement Exams
October 17, 2017

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) provides greater flexibility in state accountability systems than did previous federal legislation. In response, many states continue to refine their accountability systems to include college readiness tests, including college admissions and placement exams. This paper summarizes perspectives of K-12 educators, postsecondary educators, and researchers on these measures to inform policymakers as they revise accountability systems under ESSA.

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Manufacturing a Way to Career Readiness
September 21, 2017

CNA released Manufacturing a Way to Career Readiness and is continuing to release a series of products that examine how advanced manufacturers measure entry-level job applicants’ career readiness and continued training needs. By interviewing representatives from leading manufacturers—including Catalent Pharma Solutions, Ford Motor Company, Roll Forming Aerospace, and Toyota Motor North America—and reviewing professional literature, we developed a report, graphics, and video about how educators and industry can work together to more efficiently and effectively help students transition to careers.

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Evaluation of Connecticut Program for Employment Training
November 7, 2016

The Connecticut Health and Life Sciences Career Initiative (HL-SCI) developed a program to recruit and train veterans and workers who were unemployed, underemployed, or displaced by foreign trade. The program, funded by a Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) grant from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration, aimed to give workers more opportunities to prepare for high-wage, in-demand jobs in the health and life sciences fields.

HL-SCI developed new health and life science certificates and associate’s degree programs and revised previously existing programs. The new and revised programs incorporated several core components, including online and hybrid courses; booster modules; a standardized prior learning assessment system to award students credit for prior noncredit coursework, training, and knowledge; and enhanced job and internship placement services.

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Evaluation of Investing in Innovation (i3)-Funded Program in Northeast Tennessee
October 20, 2016

In 2010, the Niswonger Foundation received a five-year Investing in Innovation (i3) grant from the U.S. Department of Education to create the Northeast Tennessee College and Career Ready Consortium, which is composed of 29 high schools and five colleges. The Consortium aimed to improve students’ college and career readiness by scaling up local promising practices to expand access to rigorous courses. These practices included providing distance and online learning; forming college partnerships to increase dual enrollment; offering professional development for teachers; and providing college and career counseling to students.

CNA Education conducted an evaluation of the program, examining its impact on student outcomes each year for up to four full years of exposure. CNA Education also assessed the fidelity of program implementation.

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Lessons Learned from the 2015 Summer College Readiness Professional Development Forum Series
December 21, 2015

CNA Education is evaluating the Florida College and Career Readiness Initiative (FCCRI) through a grant from the U.S. Department of Education. The FCCRI is a statewide policy that has required college readiness testing in 11th grade, and then participation in college readiness and success courses in 12th grade for students who did not test as "college-ready."

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The CTE Equation in Tennessee
October 21, 2015

This report uses data from the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development, the U.S. Census Bureau, and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Standard Occupational Classification system to identify high-growth and high-wage occupations in the state of Tennessee, and the associated career and technical education (CTE) Career Clusters. This information can be used to assist educational and private industry CTE stakeholders in identifying whether the CTE Programs of Study that high schools and postsecondary institutions offer are well aligned with current and projected local labor market needs.

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The CTE Equation in Florida
October 21, 2015

This report uses data from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics to identify high-growth and high-wage occupations in the state of Florida, and the associated career and technical education (CTE) Career Clusters. This information can be used to assist educational and private industry CTE stakeholders in identifying whether the CTE Programs of Study that schools and colleges offer are well aligned with current and future local labor market needs.

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Appalachia Rising: A Review of Education Research
September 16, 2015

This report is the product of a systematic review of published data and research about education in middle Appalachia from 1995 to 2015. Special attention is paid to issues that reflect national and regional priorities: college and career readiness, educator effectiveness, access to and quality of curriculum and instruction, systemic capacity, and health and wellness factors. Overall, the review suggests that education opportunities and outcomes in middle Appalachia are improving.

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Five-Year Changes in Instructional Quality and Course Enrollments in the Northeast Tennessee i3 Consortium: Quarterly Report, May–July 2015
July 31, 2015

Two of the strategies the Northeast Tennessee College and Career Ready Consortium has implemented to expand high school students' access to academically rigorous courses are (1) improving the quality of instruction in math and science and (2) expanding the availability of online learning, distance learning, and college-level Advanced Placement and dual enrollment courses. This quarterly report examines progress made by the Consortium in these two areas during the grant period.

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Promising Practices, Challenges, and Sustainability Efforts in the Northeast Tennessee i3 Consortium: Site Visit Report
July 31, 2015

The Northeast Tennessee College and Career Ready Consortium, funded by a 2010 Investing in Innovation Fund (i3) grant to the Niswonger Foundation, aims to ensure that all its high school students graduate college and career ready. In the spring of 2015, the CNA evaluation team conducted in-person, semi-structured interviews with administrators and guidance counselors at all 30 Consortium high schools. The purpose of the interviews was to understand how schools have overcome impediments to achieving stated goals of the grant, identify promising practices in making progress toward Consortium goals, and learn how schools may be planning for sustainability after the i3 grant ends in September 2015.

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Assessment of the Florida College and Career Readiness Initiative: Year 2 Report - Executive Summary
December 17, 2014

This report describes feedback CNA Corporation obtained during the 2013/14 school year about the strengths and weaknesses of the Florida College and Career Readiness Initiative and ways to increase its effectiveness, particularly as it relates to improving those 12th grade college readiness and success courses.

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Assessment of the Florida College and Career Readiness Initiative
December 17, 2014

The Florida College and Career Readiness Initiative is a statewide policy that mandates college placement testing of 11th-graders who meet high school graduation criteria but are unlikely to meet college readiness criteria. Students who score below college-ready on the Postsecondary Education Readiness Test (PERT) are required to take math and English/language arts college readiness and success courses in 12th grade. This report discusses qualitative feedback from students, teachers, district administrators, and college faculty and staff from the 2013/14 school year. It examines how educators perceive the effectiveness of the initiative and barriers to implementation, what the grade 12 courses look like in practice, how K–12 and postsecondary institutions collaborate around the initiative, what types of promising practices Florida’s state colleges use to prepare students for college and careers, and what high school students think could be done to better prepare them for post–high school plans.

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Florida Study of Career and Technical Education
September 29, 2014

This report examines whether the outcomes for career and technical education (CTE) students—high school graduation, achievement levels, postsecondary enrollment, and employment and earnings—reflect a positive impact from CTE participation. The purpose of this study is to examine rural-urban differences in the outcomes associated with CTE in educational attainment and earnings. This study also examines differences between CTE concentrators and nonconcentrators more broadly.

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Beyond Proficient
July 22, 2014

This study explores how three high schools define and implement mastery learning to promote deeper understanding of academic content and improve college and career readiness for all students.

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The Northeast Tennessee College and Career Ready Consortium
April 30, 2014

This report focuses on two of the Northeast Tennessee College and Career Ready Consortium's (NETCO’s) course-related strategies: increasing the number of Advanced Placement courses offered and increasing the number of rigorous online learning courses offered at each of NETCO’s 30 high schools.

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From Large Urban to Small Rural Schools: An Empirical Study of National Board Certification and Teaching Effectiveness
April 15, 2014

This study responds to a request from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards to analyze National Board certification among high school teachers in understudied subject areas and locales to help fill gaps in the research literature.

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Assessment of the Florida College and Career Readiness Initiative
November 6, 2013

This report describes findings from the first year of a five-year evaluation of the Florida College and Career Readiness Initiative (FCCRI) conducted by CNA, funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Education. One goal of the report is to help Florida educators at all levels to understand the strengths and weaknesses of the FCCRI’s design and implementation, as well as describe recommendations from teachers to make the initiative more effective. A second goal is to inform educators in other states and the research community about our work.

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