Aligning Secondary and Postsecondary Education

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Aligning Secondary and Postsecondary Education: Lesson from the Past

Author

Marc A. VanOverbeke (BIO)

Assistant Professor, Foundations of Education
Northern Illinois University
Faculty Affiliate, WISCAPE
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Summary

Educators, reformers, and commissions have long underscored the need to align all levels of education and build a seamless, coordinated P-16 system. Failing to do so, they have argued, has kept too many students from pursuing an advanced education and the nation from benefiting from a more educated populace. Such was the case in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, when reformers first began to wrestle with the proper alignment of America’s loose educational structure. Now, one hundred years later, the nation’s governors and other reformers continue to argue that we need to align standards and missions between secondary and higher education. These efforts are the latest in a long history of reform; this brief considers this history and the lessons it offers for today.

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