“Multiple Perspectives on Multiple Pathways” consist of a collection of fifteen essays written by distinguished California scholars. The papers in this collection provide multiple perspectives in their reviews, synthesis and interpretations of existing research on Multiple Pathways. They report research that examines the intersection between California’s changing economy, its population diversity, its widening social and economic inequality, and its patterns of school failure across racial and ethnic communities. They explore the link between current structures (structures that maintain a divide between Career and Technical Education and academic education) and inequity. They also provide analyses of alternatives that can provide multiple pathways to high school graduation and postsecondary options that include both college and career.
Beyond Tracking Multiple Pathways to College, Career, and Civic Participation
Edited by Jeannie Oakes and Marisa Saunders
In their introduction to Beyond Tracking, Jeannie Oakes and Marisa Saunders offer a sobering assessment of American high schools: “Evidence abounds that high schools simply don’t work very well: witness strikingly high dropout rates, large percentages of graduates unprepared to succeed in college or career, education gaps that jeopardize African American and Latino students’ life chances, and widespread student disengagement. This pervasive dysfunction exacts a high price from students and from the nation’s social, economic, and civic welfare.”
Beyond Tracking responds to this dilemma by delineating and promoting an innovative and well-defined notion of multiple pathways. The book's authors clearly distinguish their use of the term multiple pathways from any updated version of the tracking system that marked so many American high schools during the past century, and from career and technical education programs. Instead, Oakes and Saunders propose a system of multiple pathways that will provide both the academic and real-world foundations that students need for advanced learning, training, and preparation for responsible civic participation. All multiple pathways schools will have four main components: a college-preparatory core; a professional/technical core; field-based learning and realistic workplace simulations; and additional support services to meet the particular needs of students and communities. In this conception of multiple pathways, students and their families choose from among a variety of options, all of which lead students to the same destination: preparation to succeed in both college and career, not one or the other.
In its detailed and innovative examination of multiple pathways, Beyond Tracking makes a crucial contribution to current discussions about high school reform and the educational challenges of the 21st century.
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