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Preparing for the Future: Final Report for Oregon Pathways for Adult Basic Skills Transition to Education and Work (OPABS) - Executive Summary

Judith A. Alamprese


February 1, 2014
Oregon’s Department of Community Colleges and Workforce Development (CCWD) launched the Oregon Pathways for Adult Basic Skills Transition to Education and Work (OPABS) Initiative in 2006 to assist low-skilled adults’ transition from the state’s Adult Basic Skills (ABS) programs to postsecondary education.

OPABS, with its multiple components of services, was designed to address a key policy issue in Oregon—to build a pipeline of prepared ABS learners to enter postsecondary education and training programs that result in jobs in high-demand occupations. Increasing human capital has continued to be a priority for the state through the passage of Senate Bill 253 in 2011 which set the goal that by 2025, 40 percent of adult Oregonians will have earned a bachelor’s degree or higher, 40 percent will have earned an associate’s degree or postsecondary credential, and 20 percent or less will have earned a high school diploma or its equivalent. OPABS has been a key strategy for CCWD in working toward this goal and represents a significant investment in the state’s ABS program. 

Twelve of the state’s 17 ABS programs have implemented OPABS at some point since OPABS began. As of fall 2013, three of the ABS programs have adopted OPABS as the main instructional approach for their ABS programs.
Since the inception of OPABS, Abt Associates has worked with CCWD to assist with OPABS design, implementation, and data collection. This final report describes OPABS framework, activities, and products; lessons from OPABS implementation; and implications for supporting OPABS sustainability and effectiveness.

Learn more about Abt’s work in Career Pathways.
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