College ready Hispanic students : a case study of institutional collaboration

Castro, Delinda Marivel
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In 2017, Hispanics had the lowest percentage of earned bachelor degrees awarded. Additionally, graduate or professional degree attainment for U.S. Hispanics was 13.2% compared to 37.2% for Non-Hispanic Whites, 22.4% for African Americans, and 57.7% for Asian Americans. Hispanic students had a high rate of remedial course enrollment as well. The impact of a growing, undereducated Hispanic population could prove harmful to United States and Texas economies. The purpose of this case study was to examine one academically high performing district in Texas to determine organizational structures used to produce Hispanic students who are ready for college. Furthermore, I explored how institutional collaboration between this school district and its public institutions of higher education (IHE) partners produced college-ready Hispanic students. I examined the district’s organizational structures and how collaboration between its high school and area public IHEs produced college-ready Hispanic students. The six participants of this case study were all employees of the case study public school district. All participants held general education licenses issued by the TEA. One participant worked in the central office, one participant represented the high school campus’ leadership, two participants were higher education coordinators and advisors, and two participants were dual credit and AP teachers. As the interviews and data collection ensued, the results indicated that the district’s sustained success with graduating college ready Hispanic students required more than collaboration with higher education partners. The five overarching themes were College Ready School Culture, College Going Experiences of the Hispanic Family, Navigating Legislative CCMR Requirements, Educator Mindsets, and Higher Education Partners are Critical to Developing Students’ College Readiness. The highest level of collaboration, known as coadunation, was achieved in the interdependence between the district and the IHEs. The case study school district brought the colleges and universities into the high school. Establishing structures for institutional collaboration that were effectively implemented over many years led to this district’s success with college readiness among its Hispanic high school graduates. The recommendations for practice include district wide expectations for the mindsets of educators. The recommendations for research include additional needs for examples of effective alignments between IHEs and school districts