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The Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education

Progress Report on ICCR Recommendations and Success After High School DART

Members of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education
Mitchell D. Chester, Ed.D., Commissioner
December 6, 2013


In November 2011, the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (Board) asked former Board member Gerald Chertavian to chair a task force to develop recommendations on integrating college and career readiness to help all students become better prepared for postsecondary education and economically viable career pathways. The resulting Integration of College and Career Readiness (ICCR) Task Force Report was accepted by the Board on June 26, 2012, and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education was charged with developing a plan for moving the report recommendations forward. Since then, the Department has presented two progress reports to the Board.

Most recently, at the March 2013 Board meeting we presented targets, trajectories and inputs intended to frame and guide the Department's work for realizing the Task Force recommendations between now and 2017. I am pleased to report we continue to make steady progress. Since that presentation, we have accomplished the following milestones:

Policy Levers

  • The ICCR Advisory Group chaired by Gerald Chertavian was constituted and met three times, establishing high level subcommittees to help move recommendations forward. The subcommittees are: 1) Advocacy; 2) Communications; and 3) Employer Champions.
  • Building upon the Task Force definition of career readiness, the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education and the Board of Higher Education have adopted a new Massachusetts definition for College and Career Readiness.

Project Management

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has:

  • Reconstituted the original ICCR organizational structure with input from the Working Group and five subcommittees to help inform the next phase of the Department's work
  • Assumed responsibility for the Pathways to Prosperity (PtP) Initiative
  • Published a comprehensive Career Development Education Guide and Glossary
  • Launched the FY14 ICCR Coordinated Professional Development Strategy
  • Identified a vendor to develop the Future Ready website
  • Awarded ICCR Demonstration Site planning grants to five districts

Communication and Professional Development

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has:

  • Collaborated with six interagency/non-profit partners to sponsor a Future Ready Summit at DCU Center for over 500 participants statewide
  • Sponsored two Race to the Top MA Model for Comprehensive School Counseling Summits in collaboration with the MA Association of School Counselors (MASCA)
  • Convened two statewide Connecting Activities conferences and multiple Youth Leadership Forums to gather input from the field and provide professional development to help move the ICCR recommendations forward
  • Convened five ICCR Demonstration Site districts to launch a two-year pilot
  • Convened statewide Early College Design Pathways initiatives including P2P, STEM Early College High Schools, and Gateway to College initiatives

Data Capacity

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has:

  • Redesigned the Connecting Activities Work-Based Learning Database to accommodate the new career development education framework and capture "awareness, exploration and immersion" activities statewide
  • Developed a comprehensive ICCR Data Trajectory Brief

While these represent some of the major milestones over the last several months, much work is being done to continue the progress we have made to prepare all students for successful futures.

As we discuss this progress at the special Board meeting on Monday evening, December 16, we will also demonstrate a new data tool that the Department has made available to districts to help them better understand their students' trajectory toward college and career readiness. Our District Analysis and Review Tool (DART) report series turns the Department's vast amount of data into valuable, accessible information. The new DART Detail for Success After High School contains a range of postsecondary and career readiness data including: demographics; high school indicators; high school performance; program of study; postsecondary education outcomes; and career development information. It also allows users to compare data in relation to other schools serving similar students and in relation to statewide trends.

Associate Commissioner Pati Gregson, Keith Westrich, Director of College and Career Readiness, and Associate Commissioner Carrie Conaway will be at the Board meeting to present the overview and respond to your questions. We look forward to sharing our progress with you on both the ICCR Task Force work and the DART Detail for Success After High School.


(1) Career Development Education Guide and Glossary

Last Updated: December 11, 2013
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