The American Educator Panels
Jul 3, 2018
In this Data Note, the authors compare nationally representative survey response data from the 2020 and 2021 Learn Together Surveys (LTS) to examine differences in how high school teachers and principals provided supports to students for successful postsecondary transitions before and during the pandemic. Through their analysis of LTS data, the authors identify equity gaps in which groups of students reportedly received sufficient supports.
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High schools play a crucial role in helping students plan for and transition to postsecondary education and career pathways. During the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, supporting all students in their transition to life after high school remains important for postsecondary success. Resources, such as school counselors and advising technologies, can affect students' postsecondary choices. Differences in access to supports in high school contribute to significant variation in student access to postsecondary opportunities; high school students experiencing poverty and students in minoritized racial/ethnic groups generally experience the largest barriers to such access.
Emerging evidence suggests that high school students' postsecondary aspirations and their engagement with school counselors have changed during the pandemic. In this Data Note, the authors compare nationally representative survey response data from the 2020 and 2021 Learn Together Surveys (LTS) to examine differences in how high school teachers and principals provided supports to students for successful postsecondary transitions before and during the first year of the pandemic.
Drawing on responses from 2,126 9th- to 12th-grade teachers and 702 high school principals to the 2021 LTS and responses from 2,279 9th- to 12th-grade teachers and 640 high school principals to the 2020 LTS, the authors compare educators' responses across various school-level characteristics, including student free or reduced-price lunch eligibility, enrollment of nonwhite students, and school locale. The authors found equity gaps in which groups of students reportedly received sufficient supports for postsecondary transitions and recommend strategies for improving students' equitable access to and engagement with such supports.
The research described in this report was funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and conducted by RAND Education and Labor.
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