Monthly Archives: April 2010


April 16th Podcast – California’s College Graduate Crisis, and What to Do About It

The podcast of our April 16 seminar “California’s College Graduate Crisis, and What to Do About It” is now available online. The speaker was Martin Carnoy, Vida Jacks Professor of Education and Economics at Stanford University.

In 2005-06 almost half of the pupils in California’s public schools were Latinos, but Latinos only received about 15 percent of the BA degrees awarded by public and private colleges in the state. Texas has a comparable Latino population, but does significantly better than California in getting Latino students through college. Carnoy explored the reasons why California’s education system falls short in ensuring post-secondary access and success for Latino students, and identified steps that the state could take to increase the number of four-year college graduates. The speaker was introduced by PACE Executive Director David N. Plank.

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Reforming Education in California: A Guide for Citizens and Candidates

PACE announces the publication of its policy book “Reforming Education in California: A Guide for Citizens and Candidates.” The goal of this briefing book is to support, in an informative and constructive manner, debates about the critical issues facing California education. “Reforming Education in California” is useful for candidates as well as for informed citizens as they evaluate proposed changes in education policies.

This briefing book provides a package of recommendations that, if implemented, will improve the quality of education in California. Beyond the specific recommendations proposed, three major themes are interwoven throughout policy book that should be considered each time the state revises its education policies: resources must be targeted to students who need them most; local schools and districts need more flexibility to allocate resources where needed; policies should be designed to support continuous improvement. There is no one silver bullet to fix California’s public education problems, but there are a series of good policies and practices that can be implemented to spur fundamental reform of the system and improved outcomes for California’s schools and students.

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March 26th Podcast – How Testing and Placement Policies Affect Language Minority Students in CA Community Colleges

The podcast of our March 26 seminar “How Testing and Placement Policies Affect Language Minority Students in CA Community Colleges,” is now available online. The speaker was George Bunch, Assistant Professor of Education at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Community colleges represent the first point of access to public higher education for many language-minority students who have attended California high schools. Yet these students face a number of language-related challenges that present potential barriers to completing their academic goals. Meanwhile, community colleges struggle to meet the needs of these “Generation 1.5” students, who do not fit the linguistic profiles of monolingual English-speakers in developmental English courses nor of more recent immigrants and international students in ESL programs. Bunch presents his recent research “mapping the terrain” of language testing and placement policies and practices at 25 California community colleges, and discusses implications for policy at the state, system, and college levels. The speaker was introduced by PACE Executive Director David N. Plank.

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