Monday, October 20, 2003

Extending School-to-College Programs to the Community College

Extending School-to-College Programs to the Community College The transition to college from high school is a difficult one for many students. Most 4 year schools have programs which help students with this stessful time. Librarians have long recognized this critical first year as well. Some of the most effective library instruction we do is in the first year.

These programs are especially helpful for students we know to be historically at-risk. Today's blogged site looks at how this sort of program can be extended to community colleges. The article begins:

"Each year, many special high school-to-college programs help youth attend college. Typically these programs target 'at risk' students- the underprivileged, minorities, or the academically challenged. Some programs are funded by private sources; others use public funds.

Educators from more than 180 countries attending a U.N. meeting affirmed that more people need postsecondary education to be sufficiently skilled (Murray, 1999). Peter Drucker (1995) agreed when he said, “knowledge has become the key resource for a nation’s military and economic strength” (p. 37). School-to-college programs acknowledge the need for postsecondary training and provide increasing access to college as the way of extending opportunity for all (Tierney & Hagedorn, 2002).

Although there is almost universal agreement on the need for postsecondary education, access to and success in college are not widespread and remain highly correlated with race, socioeconomic status, and other demographic statistics unrelated to student effort, goals, or true ability. America’s schools face difficulties in serving increasingly diverse groups of students. According to the latest census, 40% of those under the age of 18 are African American, Asian American, Hispanic, American Indian, or another “minority” (U.S. Census Bureau, 2000). Despite years of federal aid and promising strategies, students enrolled in the country’s low-income schools continue to lag behind in most measures of academic success (Levine, 1996)." Full article at