State Policy Action Planning

Since 2000, college transition programs have been successfully piloted in all six New England states with funding from the Nellie Mae Education Foundation and technical assistance and project management provided by the New England Literacy Resource Center (NELRC). The states of Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont have all made considerable progress toward developing and implementing statewide systems and funding streams to support ABE-to-college transitions.

Some of the needs cited in an assessment conducted by the New England Literacy Resource Center include:

  • Coordinated student tracking and data systems that connect the adult education and postsecondary systems
  • Financial assistance for part-time adult students
  • Coordination and alignment between ABE and developmental education curricula (e.g. dual enrollment and co-enrollment)
  • Alternative delivery systems for developmental education
  • Coordination of adult education, postsecondary education, and workforce development services and systems
  • Coordination and standardization of procedures and practices among community colleges (e.g., college placement tests and cut scores, articulation of courses, links to ABE)
  • ESOL curriculum and delivery systems that bring English Language Learners to the level of proficiency required for postsecondary success
  • State-level funding and legislation to support adult transitions to college

In 2008-09 the Nellie Mae Education Foundation contracted with the New England Literacy Resource Center to develop a funding initiative to support investigation and planning activities to address some of the existing policy barriers in the states. A key strength of this two-year initiative was that it allowed each state adult education director, in partnership with the state higher education authority and other state-level stakeholders, to identify the specific policy barrier(s) their partnership would address and the process they would use for investigation and planning. Each state developed action plans and Memoranda of Agreement that reflected their specific partnership goals and process, which were implemented during the second year of the grant.

State websites: