Abstract and Keywords
Education has long been understood as a vehicle for realizing the American dream, with the importance of education for entry and advancement in the world of work increasing in recent years. Although public officials and policymakers maintain that high schools must now prepare all students for college and career, many young people either graduate with inadequate skills or drop out prior to graduation. Education reform efforts have sought to bolster academic achievement, with particular concern for remedying achievement gaps among ethnic and racial groups. Overall results of these efforts have been inadequate, and policy formulations have overlooked relevant theory and research related to academic motivation and the context of students' lives. Theory and research related to career development and work-based learning can inform educational practice that strives to prepare all students for college and career.
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