State Policy and Performance Evaluation

Children’s Savings Accounts: Increasing the Postsecondary Payoff for Low-Income Children

CSAs are accounts typically opened at birth or kindergarten that leverage families’ investments with an initial deposit (usually from $25 to $1,000) and savings matches, usually on a 1:1 ratio.  This brief begins with a closer look at the defining attributes and prevalence of CSAs across the nation. Then it discusses CSAs potential effects on the education pipeline (early childhood, school years, college years, and post-college years). It concludes by describing the challenges facing CSA programs and suggests innovations to address these problems.


A Review of College Promise Programs: Evidence from the Midwest

College promise or tuition-free college programs are becoming increasingly popular, and there is evidence that these programs can be effective under the right conditions. In this brief, the body of research is detailed on the effects of three well-known college promise programs in the Midwest before discussing some of the key questions that policymakers and funders must consider when designing promise programs.

State Higher Education Financing Models

This brief addresses four areas in which state policy makers can learn from practices in other states and from principles of sound public policy design to strengthen their higher education financing systems. The year-to-year stability of funding, the balance between appropriations for institutions and student aid, the growing interest in tuition-free community colleges, and the allocation of funds across public colleges and universities are all areas in which states take a variety of approaches, with quite different implications for educational opportunity.

Higher Education in Focus: Selected Performance Indicators

This biennial report is intended to inform public discourse on higher education by providing key performance indicators relevant to the goal of increasing educational attainment. Performance indicators are categorized within six dimensions: Preparation, Participation, Affordability, Completion, Equity, and Finance.
Illinois | Indiana | Iowa | Kansas | Michigan | Minnesota | Missouri | Nebraska | North Dakota | Ohio | South Dakota | Wisconsin


Advancing Postsecondary Opportunity, Completion, and Productivity

This 2012-13 comprehensive report of performance indicators is intended to facilitate an assessment of the postsecondary education system in your state. In the first category, Target Outcomes, the indicators assess progress towards the key goal of increasing the number of people who enroll in college and complete a high-quality degree as efficiently as possible. The second section, Leverage Points, provides indicators relevant to intermediate outcomes associated with postsecondary degree production, including academic preparation, affordability, and institutional effectiveness. The final section, Policy Instruments, focuses on some of the system resources and policies needed to influence leverage points and target outcomes.
Illinois | Indiana | Iowa | Kansas | Michigan | Minnesota | Missouri | Nebraska | North Dakota | Ohio | South Dakota | Wisconsin 


State Constitutional Provisions and Higher Education Governance

This report provides an overview of constitutional provisions for higher education and state approaches to higher education governance across the nation. Detailed summaries are then presented for the MHEC states. 

Blueprint for College Readiness, MHEC-State Analysis

Prepared by the Education Commission of the States, the Blueprint for College Readiness features a first-of-its-kind analysis of the top 10 critical K-12 and higher education policies promoting college readiness and success.