As I continue to meet the leaders of the universities and colleges we serve, talk to the decision makers in the business community, and collaborate with the Department of Education, it has become clear to me that the number one priority of the Board of Regents needs to be attainment. We know that a vibrant economy depends on an educated workforce. Every one percent increase in the number of Ohioans with bachelor's degrees means economic activity equal to $2.5 billion per year. Armed with that information, I feel we must focus on attainment. Therefore, I have set 10 priorities for the Board of Regents that deal with attainment.
1. Comprehensive assessment of all students in 10th grade to establish college readiness or to provide remediation.
2. Improved and increased guidance and career counseling in grades 10, 11 and 12.
3. More students taking Advanced Placement courses, taking part in dual enrollment credit opportunities, Career-Technical Credit Transfer programs, and maximizing college level and post-secondary access in grades 11 and 12.
4. We need to increase merit scholarships, recognition of excellent programs for students and general scholarship availability.
5. Colleges and universities need to develop more comprehensive programs for co-operative education and internships for students in all Ohio colleges and universities.
6. Colleges and universities need to develop specialty certificate programs, where none currently exist, to meet specific employer needs.
7. We need to continue to foster further steps in articulation and credit transfer. Every course and every certificate is a building block in attaining an associates and bachelor's degree.
8. As a state, we need to develop a collaborative governance of grades pre-K to 20 that includes the Ohio Department of Education and Ohio Board of Regents so that we can ensure a seamless education continuum.
9. We need to frame all course plans in major fields of study with a goal of easier scheduling toward course and program completion.
10. We have to insist that all remediation be completed while a student is still in high school and where post-secondary remediation is demanded, we need to schedule those courses in tandem with other credit courses.
We know that jobs go to where the workforce is most educated, creative, and innovative. So we must help Ohio students figure out ways to move more quickly from education and training to compete in the workforce.