WEST PLAINS, Mo. (AP) — At the nation's community colleges, more than half of students are forced to take classes in basic math and English, skills that they should have learned years ago.
The rate is even higher at Missouri State University's two-year campus in West Plains, where three out of every four students take at least one remedial class.
Like their counterparts at public flagship universities, rural teacher colleges and urban commuter campuses, many will drop out before advancing to the next course, let alone graduate or move on to a four-year school.
Faced with a threatened cutoff of resources, colleges are trying new approaches to help students who lack basic skills. Those include self-paced math classes with tutors rather than lecturers and developmental English classes that students can take simultaneously with freshman composition.