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College Board Rolls Out Statehouse Effort to Boost Completion

The College Board Policy and Advocacy Center kicked off a national campaign today to push for 55 percent of Americans to hold a postsecondary degree by 2025.

Working with the National Conference of State Legislatures, the College Board wants to encourage leaders from education, business, and politics to work together to advance policies and practices to boost college completion, with special attention to helping low-income and minority students.

The "55 percent by 2025" target is similar to the Lumina Foundation's big goal to increase the proportion of Americans with high-quality degrees and credentials to 60 percent by the year 2025.

The first event of the College Board's year-long College Completion Agenda: State Capitals Campaign takes place today at the Maryland capitol with Gov. Martin O'Malley and College Board President Gaston Caperton among the speakers.

Maryland was chosen for the inaugural event because it has been at the forefront in education, with the state's public schools ranked No. 1 by Education Week for the third consecutive year.

As part of the college completion agenda campaign, the College Board hosts an interactive website to track Individual state education progress. It also offers the College Board: College Completion Agenda 2010 Progress Report and The College Completion Agenda: State Policy Guide.

The new campaign emphasizes the role of state legislatures in passing policies to improve college completion rates, including efforts to look at education through a P-20 lens—preK through college—aligning high school graduation and college entrance requirements. For instance, in Maryland, to make college more accessible, the state froze in-state college tuition and invested in four historically black institutions in the past four years.

After Annapolis, the State Capitals Campaign will hold events in Colorado, Florida, Massachusetts, New York, Texas, and Virginia.

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