Don’t Hold Us Back: The Impact of Remediation Across California

The insights of students into their lived experiences of remediation must shape how legislators and community college leaders make effective decisions about remedial education reform. To support equitable, student-informed decision-making, The Education Trust—West hosted five focus groups with Black and Latinx California Community College students to learn about their experiences in remedial courses and in transfer-level courses with corequisite support. Here we share students’ perspectives on 1) the academic and social supports they found impactful, 2) how remedial courses and transfer-level courses with corequisites impacted their opinions of themselves and their campuses, and 3) improvements to remediation that would help more community college students graduate.



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Karla Fernandez

Communications Manager

Karla Fernandez (she/her/hers) joins Ed Trust–West as a Communications Manager with over 11 years of experience advancing social impact initiatives.

Karla started her career as a teacher at Chicago Public Schools and UIC College Prep. After teaching, Karla joined United Friends of the Children to support LA County’s youth in foster care as a college counselor. Through Leadership for Educational Equity, Karla also served as a Policy Advisor Fellow for the office of a Los Angeles Unified School Board Member. She solidified her interests in policy analysis and quantitative research during her time with the Price Center for Social Innovation, the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles, and the USC Presidential Working Group on Sustainability. Before joining The Education Trust–West, Karla was the Associate Director for the Southeast Los Angeles (SELA) Collaborative, a network of nonprofits advocating for communities in SELA.

Karla holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Anthropology from the University of Chicago, a Master of Public Policy from the USC Price School of Public Policy, and a Graduate Certificate in Policy Advocacy from the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Karla is based out of southern California and is passionate about using data analysis, communications, and digital strategies for policy advocacy and social justice efforts.