Describes how state leaders spurred innovation to raise high school graduation and college-readiness rates through cooperative programs between school boards and community colleges, nonprofit support, and start-up grants. Discusses remaining barriers.
- Observation: Leaders most often cited support from state leaders as the impetus for change and innovation.
- Observation: Unobtrusive or helpful state policies (e.g. policies favorable to college-course taking by high school students) play an integral role in supporting the early college design and overall innovation.
- Observation: "Flexibility for accountability," the idea that early colleges are given flexibility as long as they deliver results, is an important step toward successful programs.
- Observation: Small schools with personalized support are key to the success of early college, as well as the improvement of high school graduation rates.