Cuyamaca College is one of 20 California community colleges chosen to take part in the California Guided Pathways Project (CAGP). Colleges selected for the three-year program are sending teams comprised of their President, a team facilitator, and three to five other stakeholders to six institutes designed to help campuses implement a fully-scaled guided pathway model. Each college taking part in the program has committed to implementing guided pathways for all incoming students by 2019.
Here are some questions and answers regarding the California Guided Pathways Project.
For more information about Guided Pathways, see this report by Dr. Rob Johnstone of the National Center for Inquiry & Improvement.
Drawing on research conducted by the Community College Research Center as well as the experience of several national organizations, the national Guided Pathways initiative led by the American Association of Community Colleges grouped the essential, evidence-based practices of Guided Pathways into four dimensions or “Four Pillars”: (1) Clarify the Path, (2) Enter the Path, (3) Stay on the Path, and (4) Ensure Learning. These pillars serve as a foundation for the Demonstration Project and an adaptable and informational framework for the Guided Pathways Award Program.
The project is a broad-based collaboration designed to adapt the national AACC Pathways model to California. Under the fiscal agency of the Foundation for California Community Colleges, the project draws on the expertise of the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), Bakersfield College, Center for Community College Student Engagement (CCCSE), Community College Research Center (CCRC), National Center for Inquiry & Improvement (NCII), and WestEd. Additional support will be provided by the Aspen Institute, Achieving the Dream, Jobs for the Future, and Public Agenda.
The work is supported by a California-based advisory committee that includes college representatives, Academic Senate for California Community Colleges, Achieving the Dream, California Acceleration Project, California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office, California State Universities System Office, Campaign for College Opportunity, Career Ladders Project, Chief Student Services Administrators Association, Education Results Partnership, Success Center for California Community Colleges, Institute for Evidence-Based Change, Institutional Effectiveness Partnership Initiative, Legislative Analyst’s Office, and RP Group.
The project is funded through generous support by College Futures Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the James Irvine Foundation, and the Teagle Foundation, in addition to fees paid by participating colleges.
The California Guided Pathways Project (CAGP) is a competitive program consisting of 20 California community colleges who were selected (based on specific criteria) to participate in a pilot program to implement an integrated, institution-wide approach to student achievement by creating structured educational experiences that support each student from point of entry to attainment of high-quality postsecondary credentials and careers.
CAGP has a clearly-defined model, timeframe, and terms of participation, and is being managed by national experts and informed by a California-based advisory committee.
The $150 million provided in the state budget for Guided Pathways will support one-time awards (allocated over five years) to colleges to implement the Guided Pathways framework. Sufficient funding is available to support awards for all 114 California community colleges.
Participating colleges will integrate recent state investments and redesign academic pathways in ways that promote better course-taking decisions, minimize achievement gaps, and increase the number of students who earn a certificate or degree. The Chancellor’s Office and the Board of Governors will be responsible for statewide implementation of the California Guided Pathways Award Program.
No. Colleges can and are encouraged to implement Guided Pathways through a variety of support structures. The Award Program complements the CAGP and the AACC Pathways model. Colleges participating in the Demonstration Project will be well positioned to continue this work with funding provided through the state budget. In addition, due to the work that they have already done, colleges participating in the CAGP are likely to be able to commence work sooner and benefit from the Award Program’s robust set of technical assistance and support.
Guided Pathways is not a new program or initiative but is rather a planning framework for colleges to bring together and scale effective programs, services, activities that currently exist into structures that include all students. Guided Pathways requires a whole-college transformational reform, which entails a breaking-down of silos and more dynamic collaboration between faculty, administrators, and staff. The Guided Pathways framework will help colleges to integrate the best aspects of all the initiatives into cohesive strategies that help more students get to and through college.