Ready for What? How Multiple Graduation Pathways Do—and Do Not—Signal Readiness for College and Careers

This Alliance for Excellent Education (All4Ed) report provides state policymakers and advocates with an analysis of the various graduation pathways currently in effect. It also offers recommendations to help lawmakers and others focus graduation pathway policies on equity and excellence. During the past several years, policymakers have updated high school graduation requirements to increase students’ preparation for postsecondary education and the workforce. At the same time, they have recognized that increases in the rigor of these requirements may require greater flexibility in how students demonstrate that they are prepared for postsecondary opportunities. As policymakers continue to use high school graduation requirements as a mechanism to increase college and career readiness, All4Ed offers state leaders policy considerations for graduation pathways that balance rigor, quality, and equitable access and opportunity.

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February 2021