Taking Stock of the California Linked Learning District Initiative: Seventh-Year Evaluation Report

This report from SRI International’s multiyear evaluation of the California Linked Learning District Initiative is the first to include postsecondary outcomes for students in Linked Learning pathways and confirms many of the promising findings from previous years. Compared with similar peers in traditional high school programs, students participating in certified Linked Learning pathways were more likely to graduate from high school, were less likely to drop out, and earned, on average, more credits. In addition, certified pathways were doing just as well as traditional high school programs at helping students complete the a–g requirements even as they retained more students who might otherwise have dropped out and were unlikely to pursue the full college preparatory curriculum. Certified pathway students were as likely as similar peers in traditional high schools to enroll in college. Conditional on enrollment in any postsecondary institution, pathway students were also equally likely to enroll in a 4-year college and to persist in school to a second year. Although the finding for enrollment in a 4‑year college is not significant in the overall sample, it is significant and positive for African American students and students with low prior achievement. Finally, 1 year out of high school, pathway students were more likely than their nonpathway peers to obtain jobs with benefits such as vacation and sick leave. These results, as well as more detail about the sustainability of the initiative, key district and pathway implementation strategies, and student access and equity regarding pathways are available in this seventh-year evaluation report.

Project: Evaluation of the California Linked Learning District Initiative


Note:  Revised August 2018 to reflect updated graduation data and analysis


Warner, M., Caspary, K., Arshan, N., Stites, R., Padilla, C., Patel, D., McCracken, M., Harless, E., Park, C., Fahimuddin, L., & Adelman, N. (2018). Taking stock of the California Linked Learning District Initiative. Seventh-year evaluation report. Menlo Park, CA: SRI International.