Beyond Tracking responds to the sobering assessment of American high schools by delineating and promoting an innovative and well-defined notion of multiple pathways. The book’s authors clearly distinguish their use of the term “multiple pathways” from any updated version of the tracking system that marked so many American high schools during the past century. Instead, Oakes and Saunders propose a system of multiple pathways that will “provide both the academic and real-world foundations that students need for advanced learning, training, and preparation for responsible civic participation.”
All multiple pathways schools will have four main components: a college-preparatory core; a professional/technical core; field-based learning and realistic workplace simulations; and additional support services to meet the particular needs of students and communities. “In this conception of multiple pathways, students and their families choose from among a variety of options, all of which lead students to the same destination: preparation to succeed in both college and career, not one or the other.”
In its detailed and innovative examination of multiple pathways, Beyond Tracking makes a crucial contribution to current discussions about high school reform and the educational challenges of the 21st century.
Beyond Tracking is a must-read for school leaders and policymakers. The ideas in this book point towards an educational system that provides enriched learning experiences for all students, so that they will be able to succeed in further studies and in the workplace, and so that they can make notable contributions to the common good. — Gene Bottoms, Senior Vice President, Southern Regional Education Board
Beyond Tracking offers a compelling view of multiple pathways and how they might transform American high schools. In its insistence that fundamental reforms are needed—and in its detailed consideration of how reformed high schools would better prepare students for both college and work—this book is an indispensable contribution to efforts to reimagine, and improve, high school education in America. — Ramon C. Cortines, Senior Deputy Superintendent, Los Angeles Unified School District
Beyond Tracking is a call to arms. Especially notable is that it presents citizenship as a core element of student learning. This link between learning and citizenship has been undervalued in our current quest to reform American public schools. — Wendy D. Puriefoy, President, Public Education Network