Back on Track in Texas

Back on Track Designs

Reengaging Opportunity Youth

Reengaging youth and young adults who are off track to graduation, or disconnected from both education and work, and putting them on a path to postsecondary credentials.

Lili Allen
Associate Vice President, Reconnection Strategies and Designs
617.728.4446 x105
lallen@jff.org
@LiliAllen2

Back on Track in Texas

In a statewide effort to spread and scale effective Back on Track programs, Jobs for the Future works with the Texas Education Agency (TEA) and local schools, institutions of higher education, and community based organizations to provide technical assistance, identify, and codify promising practices, develop tools for design improvement, and support replication efforts.

Strategic Policy Analysis and Capacity Building

JFF has been working with the Texas Education Agency since 2009 to help increase Texas students' postsecondary readiness and success. Through this partnership, JFF:

  • Helps TEA identify, access, and align policy, funding, and accountability measures that enable the spread and sustainability of effective Back to Track schools and programs;
  • Provides professional development for TEA's 35-plus Texas Dropout Recovery Program grantees; and
  • Produces tools and materials that strengthen TEA's capacity to support dropout recovery efforts statewide.

Replicating Success: Developing Demonstration Sites

The Rio Grande Valley Back on Track to College Replication Network builds on the successes of the TEA's Texas Dropout Recovery Pilot Program (TDRP). The Network brings together the school destricts of Brownsville, Donna, Edinburg, La Joya, Pharr-San Juan-Alamo, and San Benito, with South Texas College and Texas State Technical College, to develop and spread "Back on Track" schools that can significantly impact Texas' graduation and college-readiness rates. The Network’s anchor site is the College, Career, and Technology Academy (CCTA) in the Pharr-San Juan-Alamo school district, TDRP grantee. Since 2007, CCTA has graduated more than 1000 off-track students college-ready—many with some college credits already earned.

Jobs for the Future is developing and coordinating the Replication Network in the Rio Grande Valley. The purpose of the Replication Network is two-fold:

  1. Provide on-the-ground demonstration of successful practices in dropout recovery and postsecondary transitions that can be adopted in other programs in the state and across the country, and
  2. Provide consultation and support to further the work of sites already demonstrating the potential for excellence.
Overview

Visit the Back on Track in Texas website.

Funding for the Back on Track to College Replication Network is through a grant from Open Society Foundations.

Outcomes

Since the TEA launched the Texas Dropout Recovery Program, with technical assistance provided by Jobs for the Future starting in 2009, more than 9,800 students have been reenrolled—more than four times the number projected.

Related Publications & Tools

Report: Back on Track Through College in the Rio Grande Valley: From Dropout Recovery to Postsecondary Success

Toolkit: Career, College & Technology Academy. Be sure to check out the video gallery for ideas on how to use video as a recruitment tool, a promotional tool, and a learning tool.

Report: Back on Track's work with CCTA