Education alliance completes statewide tour to raise attainment
Achieve60AZ has reached its goal of meeting with community leaders from every county to find tangible solutions to close the achievement gap in Arizona.
The grassroots alliance, dedicated to meeting our state goal of 60 percent educational attainment among Arizona adults by the year 2030, wrapped up its year-long statewide tour on November 7, meeting with leaders in Cochise County.
“Our goal will not be reached by simply talking to people in Maricopa County,” said Achieve60AZ Executive Director Rachel Yanof. “This is a goal for the entire state, so we wanted to make sure leaders across the state were aware and all in. We know Mohave County’s problems are not the same as Pima’s or as Yavapai’s. We wanted to get people all across our great state thinking about what they and their community can do to best reach our 60 percent attainment goal.”
In February, the organization held a convening in Phoenix to release its first-ever State of Attainment Report, detailing strategies and best practices to take Arizona from the current 45% attainment among adults to 60 percent by the 2030.
Achieve60AZ launched the tour to brief leaders from across Arizona on the state of attainment and encourage them to discuss what attainment means in their community and to actively think of steps and strategies that they could help make a difference to close the education achievement gap in their communities.
“All of our communities in Arizona have a role to play in meeting the state goal for attainment—work that spans from K-12, to higher education to workforce and economic development,” said Vince Yanez, Achieve60AZ Board Chair and Helios Education Foundation Senior Vice President – Arizona Community Engagement. “Increasing attainment will create a more prosperous Arizona for us all, and we need investment from stakeholders at all levels in order to reach that goal.”
The organization is currently working to increase the number of Arizonans with a postsecondary degree or credential through various projects, including working with the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education and the Lumina Foundation to close attainment gaps for minorities, developing a plan to revamp public employee tuition reimbursement plans with Lumina Foundation, and helping communities localize the attainment goal with Arizona Community Foundation and Expect More Arizona.
The State of Attainment Report can be found at bit.ly/StateofAttainment
About Achieve60AZ: More than 100 organizations in Arizona form Achieve60AZ that is fueled by a community-based effort to ensure Arizona remains competitive through the power of education. Their collective goal is to generate greater awareness of the importance of increasing Arizona’s level of educational attainment while building support to improve college entry and completion; boost adult education and training; and fuel a pipeline of competitive talent for Arizona’s employers. Achieve60AZ promotes support for the long-term steps needed in college entry and completion, adult education and training, and identifying and closing skills gaps to better prepare our workforce and our state for the future when the majority of jobs in Arizona will require some type of higher education. For more information, visit: www.achieve60az.com.