States must take the lead in the adoption of metrics that align with the community college role, scope, and mission. In addition, states must continue to implement comprehensive articulation and transfer policies, workforce development policies, and P-20 partnerships. Therefore, the following recommendations are made concerning state policy and advocacy as it relates to the establishment of community college metrics, articulation and transfer initiatives, workforce development policies, and P-20 partnerships:
Recommendation 1: AACC advocate that the Voluntary Framework of Accountability (VFA) be recognized by states as accepted metrics for America’s community colleges.
Recommendation 2: AACC advocate for states to implement policies to ensure a seamless transfer of courses, certificates, and degrees from community colleges to universities.
Recommendation 3: AACC advocate that community colleges be designated by states as the primary provider of workforce education and training.
Recommendation 4: AACC advocate comprehensive P-20 partnerships that encourage students to have a clear pathway to both higher education and careers.
Without a universally recognized set of metrics, it will be increasingly difficult for community colleges to measure success and accurately tell our story.
Recommendation 1: AACC advocate that the Voluntary Framework of Accountability (VFA) be recognized as the nationally accepted metrics for America’s community colleges and used for reports such as the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act (Perkins), Workforce Investment Act (WIA), and the White House College Score Card (College Score Card).
Recommendation 2: AACC advocate for the National Student Clearing House to be designated as the official provider of accountability data for the VFA and all Federal metrics.
Recommendation 3: AACC advocate the importance of colleges continuing to provide the opportunity for individuals to achieve their goals and aspirations through the availability of Pell Grants.
Recommendation 4: AACC advocate that Pell Grant success metrics use the VFA definitions that reflect both the need for students to complete certificates and degrees as well as employment and wage data.
Recommendation 5: Because of the importance of improving student access and success, that AACC advocate for the reinstatement of the Pell Grant Ability to Benefit option which allows students without a high school diploma or a high school equivalency to participate in higher education.
The Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) Act provides community colleges funds to expand and improve their ability to deliver education and career training programs that prepare individuals for employment in high-wage, high-skill occupations. This program has become essential to creating consortia that leverage resources to meet the needs of individuals, employers, and communities. Therefore, Implementation Team 6 makes the following recommendation regarding TAACCCT:
Recommendation 6: AACC advocate for the continued funding of the TAACCCT in order to enable community colleges to provide the programs needed to meet the needs of employers and to support economic growth.