May 15, 2019


Districts Invited to Apply for National Postsecondary Strategy Institute

AEA PREP is excited to host a 2-day workshop for district teams in partnership with the National Postsecondary Strategy Institute (NPSI) from Chicago, to be held at Des Moines Area Community College on September 23 & 24, 2019. The National Postsecondary Strategy Institute (NPSI) helps school districts develop their internal capacity to support every student toward attaining a successful postsecondary pathway.

Workshop Details

The goal of this workshop is to help school districts develop their internal capacity to support every student toward attaining a successful postsecondary pathway. This will be done through a hands-on, action-oriented workshop focused on the integration of three critical components: a district postsecondary framework and strategy; a data strategy; and engagement of school counselors as leaders. Up to 27 district teams (~3 per AEA) will be selected from across the state following the application period (May 3 - May 31).  

NPSI - Iowa program overview and application instructions
NPSI - Iowa Online application link


What is AEA PREP?

Future Ready Iowa promotes the reality that Iowans need postsecondary education and training to meet the state's workforce demands and economic development needs, and to provide each Iowan with a living wage.  While there are many adults currently in the workforce eligible to upgrade their education and skills, K-12 schools possess access to the greatest number of entrants into the talent pipeline needed to meet the goal that 70% of Iowans have education or training beyond high school. Postsecondary readiness is a promise all K-12 schools should make to the greater than 90% of Iowa high school seniors who graduate each year.  This is supported by the AEA Compact which states that "every child who graduates from an Iowa pre-k-12 public or non-public accredited school will be prepared for success in postsecondary studies, a career, and citizenship.”  In addition, the Compact states “a postsecondary readiness goal will be established that most accurately identifies and tracks postsecondary success.”         
The statewide AEA system can best accomplish this goal through the creation of a statewide partnership and resource center to improve postsecondary readiness and education attainment, with a focus on closing attainment gaps that exist for those populations traditionally underrepresented in higher education, including first generation college students, students from low socioeconomic households, racial and ethnic minorities, and students with disabilities.  This newly established entity is AEA PREP (Postsecondary Readiness & Equity Partnership), and is focused on building equitable capacity throughout Iowa among AEAs, and in turn, PK-12 schools.

AEA PREP’s primary functions include:

  • the collection and distribution of timely/relevant postsecondary readiness data to PK-12 districts including the creation of a statewide postsecondary data dashboard with district-specific data;
  • the development of a statewide network of postsecondary readiness leads in each AEA with specialized training in supporting postsecondary readiness initiatives and programs;
  • a resource center for K-12 educators to improve postsecondary readiness, including the latest research, evidence-based practice, webinars, presentations, and other relevant materials.

AEA PREP centralizes and streamlines the data collection and follow-up district professional development/support needed to improve equitable student postsecondary readiness outcomes.  In addition, AEA PREP is supported by a Director, Data Analyst, and others who share responsibility for oversight of the data collection, data warehouse, dashboards, professional development, and training of an equitable, statewide professional network of postsecondary readiness leads in each AEA.

If you are in the GWAEA service area and have questions about AEA PREP, please contact Chad Blanchard.


Category: The Linker