The first results are in for the Cal State system’s controversial move last year to eliminate non-credit remedial classes and replace them with regular courses, buttressed with extra support, that count toward an undergraduate degree. Last fall, nearly 7,800 students like Perez were able to pass those higher-level math classes, according to CSU data released Monday.
In both 2017 and 2018, about the same number of first-year students — 17,400 — were unprepared for college-level math courses. About two-thirds of those who enrolled in one anyway succeeded under both the old and new systems. But the number of students who did so under the new reforms increased dramatically — 7,787 students last fall, compared to just 950 the previous year.
“What’s exciting to me about this data is that it refutes a theory that … all of these students who are unprepared for college math [will] fail,” said James T. Minor, a CSU assistant vice chancellor. “The data simply do not support that. Disproportionately, low-income, black and brown students are now earning college credit.”