California Steps Up to Support Adult Learners

03 Jun 2024

The Governor’s Office and the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office (CCCCO) today announced that they submitted an Ability to Benefit (ATB) State-Defined Plan for approval by the U.S. Department of Education.

Career Ladders Project and our partner World Ed/JSI informed development of the ATB proposal, which would remove barriers to college for students who do notCalifornia State Capitol building possess a high school diploma or equivalency, helping them access federal financial aid. If the proposal is approved, an estimated four million Californians without a diploma or equivalency stand to benefit from increased opportunity and access to higher education, training, and jobs.

This aligns with the state’s goal to better serve learners of all ages under the forthcoming Master Plan for Career Education, and it complements the adult dual enrollment efforts that were previously enabled through SB 554. By using ATB and dual enrollment in tandem, colleges and adult schools can support adult learners to work on attaining their high school diploma or equivalency while taking college courses.