Back in the blogging saddle after a few months away. Texas, which as usual had a very busy legislative session this year (they are in regular session only in odd-numbered years), enacted numerous pieces of intriguing legislation designed to improve college completion.
Some of these enactments are clearly designed to help students transition from high school to postsecondary--one such piece of legislation is H.B. 2909, which makes various changes to the state's public awareness campaign promoting higher education. Among the changes: the campaign now must provide information on the benefits of obtaining postsecondary education, the types of postsecondary institutions and degree programs available, the academic preparation needed to successfully pursue a postsecondary education, and how to obtain financial aid and the types of financial aid available. Perhaps even more importantly, the legislation specifies that the higher education coordinating board must work with other agencies to implement the public awareness campaign (previously such coordination was voluntary), and directs the board to collaborate with the Texas Education Agency (i.e., state SEA), the P-16 council, and other appropriate entities, including regional P-16 councils and businesses.
This is definitely a step in the right direction for a state that has already done much policy-wise to enhance students' college readiness, and has set its sights on closing the gaps (both in-state and nationally) on college participation and success.
More 2011 Texas enactments on improving transitions and postsecondary completion may be highlighted at a later date either here or on my other blog, which is geared at policy and research innovations in general.