In its efforts to blur the lines between our secondary and postsecondary systems, Colorado has incentivized schools and districts to extend and expand work-based learning, postsecondary, and career exploration opportunities to high school students throughout the state.
Among the nine programs structured around postsecondary and/or career and workforce readiness, Path4Ward stands out for its learner-centered approach. Established in 2021 as a five-year pilot, the program recognizes that some students seek to finish high school early and aims to prevent them from getting disengaged and slipping through the cracks during a critical time in their lives.
After a full year of implementation, Colorado Succeeds, and its implementation partners, the Colorado Department of Higher Education, RESCHOOL Colorado, and Zero Dropouts, are sharing early wins, challenges, and learning in a new report: Building A More Learner-Centered System: Emerging Learnings from Colorado’s Path4Ward Program.
With over 200 students served, the facilitators have identified challenges such as students facing upfront costs before receiving their funds and a lack of capacity for school districts to effectively implement the program, despite interest.
Download our latest report and read more on the barriers students are facing, the challenges facilitators have identified, and proposed solutions.