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Policy Brief

Policy Brief: Equitable State Funding for School Facilities

By Julien Lafortune, Niu Gao, Mary Severance

Funding for school facilities comes mostly from local sources and depends on local property wealth. California provides some funding through the School Facility Program (SFP), but many have noted that SFP privileges wealthier districts. Policymakers will need to identify equitable funding streams that give all students access to safe and effective learning environments

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Geography of Community College Transfers in California

By Cesar Alesi Perez, Hans Johnson, Vicki Hsieh

Transfers from community colleges to the University of California and California State University have increased in recent years, though transfer rates vary across community college districts and campuses and across racial/ethnic groups.

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New Law Raises Standards for Police Officers

By Shannon McConville, Deepak Premkumar

A new state law raises the minimum age for law enforcement—from 18 to 21—and requires California’s community college system to create a new policing degree program. How might these changes affect the law enforcement workforce?

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What’s Next for Higher Education?

By Hans Johnson, Kevin Cook, Lande Ajose

Another uncertain year is likely, even as students and the institutions they attend seek to return to some semblance of normalcy. What are key issues to watch in 2022 in improving access, completion, and equity in California’s higher education systems?

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College Admissions in an Era of Uncertainty

By Niu Gao, Hans Johnson

The University of California and the California State University have altered admissions policies to address some of the academic effects of the pandemic and to increase equity in access. What does the early evidence say about the impact of these changes?


Community College Math in California’s New Era of Student Access

By Marisol Cuellar Mejia, Olga Rodriguez, Hans Johnson, Cesar Alesi Perez

In fall 2019, California’s community colleges began implementing AB 705, making reforms to place thousands of students away from remedial courses and directly into the introductory courses necessary to transfer to a four-year college. In this report, we focus on math courses and the progress that colleges and students have made under the new system as of fall 2020.


Keeping College Affordable for California Students

By Kevin Cook, Jacob Jackson

California’s financial aid programs reduce tuition for most students. But the state and its higher education institutions can improve college access and success by providing additional aid to lower-income students, addressing growing non-tuition costs, and eliminating barriers that increase the time it takes to earn a degree.


Police Use of Force and Misconduct in California

By Deepak Premkumar, Alexandria Gumbs, Shannon McConville, Renee Hsia

Nearly 200 Californians die each year in police encounters. Amid growing concern over civilian deaths and racial injustice, we examine what the existing data can—and cannot—tell us about police use of force and misconduct. We also offer recommendations for strengthening the state’s ongoing efforts to improve police transparency and accountability.

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College and Major Can Matter A Lot for Starting Wages

By Jacob Jackson, Hans Johnson

Students’ future income can vary widely by the college they attend and their field of study, with people in nursing and computer science fields typically among the highest earners.

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