Community colleges are a crucial gateway to higher paying jobs, but too many California students face an unnecessary roadblock to academic and career success. Currently, standardized tests assess 75 percent of community college students as “unprepared”—making them less likely to finish their education. But new research shows that these students are more prepared than the tests indicate. By being forced to take unnecessary remedial non-credit courses, community college students waste time and money.
Urge your Senator to stand with students and vote YES on AB 705: The Student Success Act. AB 705 will require community colleges to consider high school transcripts instead of standardized test scores to decide if students must take remedial courses—helping more students secure certificates or degrees or successfully transfer to a four-year institution.
Research indicates previous school performance is a much better indicator of preparedness than standardized testing. AB 705 is a commonsense reform that:
- Prevents students from being unfairly tracked into remedial programs.
- Makes it more likely that a student will enter and complete transfer-level coursework.
- Ensures community colleges maintain local flexibility while requiring they use high school performance as a criteria for placement in English and mathematics courses.
Our current system is profoundly unfair, with more Black and Latino students being placed in multiple remedial classes and 50-60 percent of the racial achievement gaps in college completion driven by initial placement into English and math.