Dowell, D.A., California State University Long Beach, USA
Long Beach California USA is home to a uniquely vigorous partnership between primary and secondary schools and higher education that has been recognized as one of the most successful in the United States. Long Beach is an economically varied city with parts ranging from expensive waterfront homes to distressed inner-city areas. The city was identified as the most ethnically diverse in the United States by the Year 2000 Census and is home to large populations of immigrants from Latin America and Asia. More than 90,000 students attend primary and secondary schools and 60,000 attend higher education. The collaboration between public schools and higher education is extensive and pervasive. Teacher preparation, professional development, assessment, student support and instruction are all focus areas for collaboration. Standards-based reform, embraced by the school district in the early 1990s, has become an organizing framework for the collaboration. The partnership has made conscious use of data on student achievement to measure the success of its work. Key indicators used by the partners include reading achievement in primary school, benchmark performance by grade level, high school writing proficiency, fullfilment of college preparatory requirements, college attendance and more. The partnership has had great impact on the higher education institutions as well as public schools, with the adoption of standards-based instruction in college level courses. This presentation will provide a description of the Long Beach partnership and data on the impacts of this uniquely intensive collaboration on student performance.