ERIC Number: ED463412
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2001-Dec
Career Academies: Impacts on Students' Initial Transitions to Post-Secondary Education and Employment.
Kemple, James J.
Career academies are characterized by these three basic features: a school-within-a-school organizational structure, curricula that combine academic and career or technical courses based on a career theme, and partnerships with local employers. In a 10-year longitudinal study of the academy model, begun in 1993 in 9 schools around the country, some 1,700 academy applicants in the 8th or 9th grade were randomly assigned to their high schools' academy or any other high school program. The evaluation found, as of the year after scheduled high school graduation, that although the career academies enhanced the high school experiences of their students in ways that were consistent with the reform's short-term goals, these positive effects did not translate into changes in high school graduation rates or initial transitions to postsecondary education and jobs. Other key findings included: (1) the academies had little influence on course content, classroom instructional practices, and standardized test scores; (2) for students at high risk of dropping out, the academies increased the likelihood of staying in school through 12th grade, improved attendance, and increased number of credits earned; and (3) relative to similar students nationally, both studied groups had high rates of high school graduation, college enrollment, and employment. The results suggest that career academies should consider expanding their efforts to recruit students who may not be motivated to enroll in academies on their own, to provide college counseling, and to increase teacher professional development activities in order to improve curriculum and instruction. (Contains 25 references, 10 figures, and 6 tables.) (KC)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Academic Education, Career Academies, Dropout Prevention, Dropouts, Education Work Relationship, Educational Practices, Graduation, High Risk Students, High Schools, House Plan, Integrated Curriculum, Longitudinal Studies, Outcomes of Education, Program Effectiveness, School Holding Power, Success, Vocational Education
Manpower Demonstration Research Corporation, 16 East 34th Street, New York, NY 10016. Tel: 212-532-3200. For full text: http://www.mdrc.org/Reports2002/CA_StudentsImpacts/ CA_StudentImpactwTech.pdf.
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: DeWitt Wallace/Reader's Digest Fund, Pleasantville, NY.; Ford Foundation, New York, NY.; Department of Education, Washington, DC.; Department of Labor, Washington, DC.; Grant (W.T.) Foundation, New York, NY.; Pew Charitable Trusts, Philadelphia, PA.; Rockefeller Foundation, New York, NY.; George Gund Foundation, Cleveland, OH.; Grable Foundation, Pittsburgh, PA.; Richard King Mellon Foundation, Pittsburgh, PA.; American Express Foundation, New York, NY.; Alcoa Foundation, Pittsburgh, PA.; Russell Sage Foundation, New York, NY.; Center for Research on the Education of Students Placed At Risk, Baltimore, MD.; Westinghouse Foundation, Pittsburgh, PA.; Citigroup Foundation, New York, NY.; Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation, Inc., New York, NY.
Authoring Institution: Manpower Demonstration Research Corp., New York, NY.
Note: Part of the 10-year Career Academies Evaluation project.