December 18, 2007
For immediate release
The California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE) Stepping into Your Future program provides free assistance to students retaking their exit exams so that they may earn their high school diplomas. The program is currently working with community college, adult school, and K-12 District partners across the state to recruit students from the high school classes of 2006 and 2007 for the initial offerings of the Stepping Into Your Future course. Faculty and researchers at UC Santa Barbara’s Gevirtz School are providing overall content development oversight for the statewide collaborative project, funded through Butte and Lake Tahoe Community Colleges by the California Community College Chancellor’s Office. The statewide partnership developing Stepping Into Your Future also includes content and technology partners from other community colleges, California State Universities, UC, and K-12 Districts.
This research-based preparatory program curriculum has been developed specifically for young adults with emphasis on high-interest, career, and workforce topics. Technological resources enable students to access high quality instruction and materials from sites conveniently located in their neighborhood, from their adult school site, or via computer and Internet from their own homes and at times convenient to them.
At UC Santa Barbara’s Gevirtz School the principal investigator is Beth Yeager, Assistant Researcher with the Center for Education Research on Literacy & Inquiry in Networking Communities (LINC). Yeager is also a member of the English Language Arts Content Development team. Working with her on that team is Carol Dixon, Associate Dean of the Gevirtz School. The underlying conceptual framework for the English Language Arts Content Development is based on Dixon’s work with Directed Reading and Thinking (DRTA) and using a Language Experience approach with second language learners. “What we’re developing in English Language Arts has not been done before in online contexts,” says Yeager. “It’s a whole new adventure, because we’re helping students to build new approaches to being active ‘real world’ readers and writers as well as test takers – it may be test prep, but it goes far beyond that. We didn’t want to be involved in traditional test preparation. We also wanted to help students develop the concepts and reading/writing approaches that will help them in their future school or work.”
Measuring the CAHSEE program’s effectiveness is an evaluation team based at UCSB. Professor Judith Green is Director of Evaluation for the CAHSEE Project with Beth Yeager co-directing. Dr. Terry Inglese, post doctoral researcher working with LINC, is coordinating the work of graduate students on this evaluation effort.
Finally, Dr. Sarah Hough, Assistant Researcher at the Gevirtz School, is on the statewide math content development team for CAHSEE.
[Beth Yeager, Judith Green, and Sarah Hough are available for interviews; contact George Yatchisin at 805 893 5789]
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