President Gottfredson, Lane partners target success for high school graduates

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President Gottfredson (center) spoke to the Oregon Education Investment Board
President Gottfredson (center) spoke to the Oregon Education Investment Board

University of Oregon President Michael Gottfredson and local education partners discussed continuing success for high school graduates last week at a meeting of the state’s education investment board.

Speaking at the invitation of Oregon Chief Education Officer Rudy Crew, Gottfredson and Connected Lane County, a coalition of education leaders, made a proposal for a regional achievement compact during a meeting of the Oregon Education Investment Board.

Envisioned by OEIB member and Lane Community College President Mary Spilde, Connected Lane County is a coalition of education leaders working to increase the number of local high school graduates who are successful in higher education and life. Leaders from the UO; Lane Community College; the Eugene, Springfield, Bethel and rural school districts; the Lane Education Service District; and early childhood education programs are members.

Formerly called the Educational Partnership, the coalition was formed three years ago to share information, increase cooperation and support county students in their education transitions.

The partnership has grown to involve early childhood education and social service partners. The effort is supported by a coordinating committee, a committee focusing on shared data and metrics and subcommittees focusing on support of student transitions.

In this second presentation to the state board, Gottfredson was joined by Lane Education Service District Superintendent Larry Sullivan, Bethel School District Superintendent Colt Gill, Springfield Public Schools Assistant Superintendent Matt Coleman, United Way of Lane County’s Holly Mar Conte and UO Center for Educational Policy Research Co-director Terri Ward.

Connected Lane County could become a pilot project for similar regional achievement compacts throughout Oregon.

Gottfredson told the board that the UO and its partners are committed to a holistic approach to education that ensures the success of students from birth to K-12, higher education, into careers and beyond.

The sharing of student performance data helps to eliminate hurdles for students and educators, enabling the tracking of successful educational outcomes from pre-kindergarten through higher education and beyond, Gottfredson said.

Coalition partners have met on concrete strategies and initiatives to continue to improve access and success by students at all transitional stages. The partners said they’re ready to move forward with helping to apply the concept statewide.

- from UO Public and Government Affairs